The use of plants as healing therapy is as old as medicine itself, perhaps human civilization itself.
Herbal medicine refers to the use of plant’s seeds, leaves, berries, roots, barks or flowers for medicinal purposes, for internal or external use.
Plants have remarkable healing properties and can be utilized to treat, support and re-balance a person’s physical and spiritual body.
Modern medicine recognizes herbalism as a form of complementary medicine, as the practice of herbalism is not strictly evidence-based medicine using the scientific method with its core concepts. This is due to the fact that there is an immense complexity when it comes to collecting, preparing, preserving, packaging and administering herbs in clinical practice that makes them unsuitable for standardization and thus patent-friendly down the road. The irony is that 252 drugs that were classified Essential by the World Health Organization, 11% (28 drugs) were exclusively derived from plants.
Naturopathic botanical medicine is functioning like a bridge in between the old art and science of herbalism and the evidence-based medicine of today, merging tradition with pharmacognosy, bridging vitalistic concepts with allopathic medicine. We, the naturopaths, study the most common plants (350 of them) and we know if there is therapeutic value in employing a plant for a specific condition based on old tradition but sanctioned by evidence-based approaches. We are also very knowledgeable in the Drug-Plant interactions and contraindications, as many patients of naturopathic medicine are taking prescribed medications.