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CHINESE HERBAL MEDICINE

Definitions

Chinese Herbology has a vast and complex history. There are approximately 4,000 Chinese herbs documented and hundreds of formulas that have been developed over the centuries. From this compilation, there are roughly 400 commonly used formulae which are administered in clinical application. The formulas are usually composed of between two to twenty-four herbs.

Some herbs are wild and grow on riverbanks or mountainsides, while others are farmed. The plants are harvested and their seeds, flowers, stems, and bark are isolated and used in mixing the natural formula.  The herbal formulae work alongside acupuncture treatments to optimize and boost the effectiveness of the treatments.

– Alberta Association of TCM Doctors

Chinese herbs are combinations of herbs, roots, powders, or animal substances to help restore balance in the body.

– HealthLink BC

Chinese herbal products have been studied for many medical problems, including stroke, heart disease, mental disorders, and respiratory diseases (such as bronchitis and the common cold). A US national survey showed that about one in five Americans use them.

For more information about specific herbs, see NCCIH’s Herbs at a Glance Web page. You can find additional information on botanical (plant) dietary supplements on the Office of Dietary Supplements Web site.

– The National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health

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