Chinese herbal medicines are mainly plant based, but some preparations include minerals or animal products. They can be packaged as powders, pastes, lotions or tablets, depending on the herb and its intended use.
Different herbs have different properties and can balance particular parts of the body. Chinese herbal medicines can be successful in treating a range of disorders, particularly gynaecological and gastrointestinal disorders.
Are Chinese Herbs safe?
Chinese herbal medicines are very safe when prescribed correctly by a properly trained practitioner. Over the centuries doctors have compiled detailed information about the use of herbs and have placed great emphasis on the protection of the patient. Allergic type reactions are rare, and will cause no lasting damage if treatment is stopped as soon as symptoms appear.
Herbs can act on the body as powerfully as pharmaceutical drugs and should be treated with the same caution and respect. Some herbs can be toxic in high doses; others can cause allergic reactions. It is important to ensure your practitioner is fully qualified. Never abandon your regular medication or alter the dose without the knowledge and approval of your GP.
How to take granulated herbs
When prescribed powdered herbs:
1. administer at least one half hour before or after
meals or 30– to 60 minutes after meals (food
2. tonic herbs should be taken with an empty stomach
3. formulas which are irritating to the gastro-intestinal
tract should be taken after meals
Place the herbs in a glass and dissolve with a small amount of warm water (50mls). Consume all the liquid.
Should you experience any side effects such as diarrhoea or vomiting. Stop taking the herbs and contact your Chinese Medicine Health Care Provider.
Stop taking your herbs if you develop symptoms of a cold/influenza, gastric “flu” or any other symptoms associated with an acute illness not discussed during you previous consultation. Resume the herbs when you are feeling better.