Plants better than pills?

I just read this cool article by Dr. Andrew Weil on why whole plant-based medicine works better than pharmaceuticals.

Herbalists understand that when we use a particular herb, the benefit to the patient doesn’t come from just one chemical in that herb, it comes from the entire plant. In Chinese herbal medicine we combine several herbs into one formula to create a synergistic effect between all of the different compounds in each herb. Some work to moderate harsher elements in other herbs and some work to enhance the overall effects of the formula.

We certainly shouldn’t do away with pharmaceuticals, but herbs are a good choice for many different conditions. If we can help solve someone’s health problems with a more gentle, plant-based approach, why not give that a try?

NewYork Herb Pharmacy

We visited Chinatown on our last trip to NYC because I wanted to visit a Chinese herb pharmacy. We found this rather large, well-organized pharmacy, and were drawn in by the big barrells of ginseng that they had on display. The rest of the shop was filled with hundreds of different patent formulas (Chinese herbs prepared in pill form), as well as raw herbs that one of their pharmacists could use to fill a prescription.