Chinese Herbal Medicine

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​Chinese Herbal Medicine in a Nutshell

A Chinese researcher, Youyou Tu, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Medicine in 2015. The Nobel Prize official website states that:

“A number of serious infectious diseases are caused by parasites spread by insects. Malaria is caused by a single-cell parasite that causes severe fever. Traditional Chinese medicine uses sweet wormwood to treat fever. In the 1970s, after studies of traditional herbal medicines, Youyou Tu managed to extract a substance, artemisinin, which inhibits the malaria parasite. Drugs based on artemisinin have led to the survival and improved health of millions of people.”

The use of artemisinin to treat malaria is a notable example of the modern use of Chinese Herbal Medicine. It has been used in China for thousands of years and continues to work where western medicine has not worked. Like acupuncture, Chinese Herbal Medicine is an integral part of the Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). It uses thousands of medicinal substances—primarily plants, but also some minerals and animal products, to treat diseases and promote health. In TCM, herbs are often combined in formulas and given as teas, capsules, liquid extracts, granules, or powders.

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Conditions Treated Using Chinese Medicine in Gainesville, Fl

As a complete medicine system, TCM is claimed to treat many diseases. Based on my own experience and the experiences that my family has accumulated over more than 120 years of combined clinical practices, we have concluded that the Chinese Herbal Medicine is effective for many contiditons. Below is a list of some examples. Please note that this is not an all comprehensive list. There are conditions that we have treated sucessfully but not prevalent enough to make the list. There are other conditions that other physicians have treated successfully but we have not seen those types of patients. Therefore, they are not listed either.

Is Chinese Herbal Medicine Safe?

The formulas are safe if prescribed by a competent, experienced herbalist.

Like western medicine, almost almost all herbal medicines have some adverse side-effects. Some ingredients have even been found harmful and they have been banned. The prescribing practitioner needs to understand the benefits vs side effects and know the safe dosage and combination. We take patients’ safety as our top priority and do not use ingredients that have been reported to be harmful.

There is a saying in China “医不三世,不服其药”, which literally means that one should not take the medicine from a doctor whose family has not practiced medicine for three generations. This is an old adage that does not mean much in our times since now people go to medical school to learn how to treat patients, instead of apprenticing for their fathers like in the old days. However, growing up in a family with a long tradition of practicing Traditional Chinese Medicine still has its benefits. The textbooks are not all inclusive so many usefully tips are still taught one-to-one. Most teachers simply cannot dedicate their time to their students like a parent would do to a child.

The other concern is the agricultural residues in herbs. Like any other agricultural produces, herbs are farmed and some farmers may use practices that would leave over-limits residues. At our clinic, we only prescribe herbs supplied by vendors that are compliant with FDA’s Current Good Manufacturing Practice for Herb Compound Compliance. Similar to organic foods, they are more expensive, but meet the residue standards and are safer to consume. When we prescribe for ourselves and our family members we use exactly the same ingredients.

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How Do The Herb Formulas Taste? ​

Most of them are not good tasting but tolerable. They are normally prescribed in powder form, similar to protein powder. You eat with a spoon and wash down with water.

Useful Facts About Chinese Herbal Medicine Gainesville

In general, Chinese herbal medicine has been around for more than 3,000 years and it remains popular even after Western medicine has become the more accepted form of therapy. Those of us who practice chinese herbal medicine in Gainesville believe in the healing elements of Chinese herbal medicines. We regard this therapy from a holistic perspective, which means that its therapeutic tendencies don’t just cure the physical body, but also the mind.

Traditional Chinese medicine is not just about drinking herbal potions and teas. Like modern medicine, or Western medical science, it also has different branches and points of focus, or interest.

Chinese Herbal Medicine is a Science

Cultivating and harvesting the herbs used in Chinese medicine follows a science. The state of the climate and the time of the harvest are quite significant to the growers of these herbs.

Preparing these herbs for therapeutic use also entails a rigid preparation process. As much as possible, everything is harvested and used – leaves, stems, branches, fruits, tree bark and twigs, as well as the seeds of a plant. It’s important to preserve potency, as well as the taste of the herbal medicine as sweet, sour, bitter, bland or acrid.

Health Benefits of Chinese Medicine in Gainesville, Fl

Countless studies have been done to ascertain the effective therapeutic benefits of Chinese herbal medicine against various illnesses and diseases, including the common cold, skin allergies and the more serious conditions of the heart, respiratory and digestive system. Chinese herbs are also known to provide energy for the body in the form of ginseng. It may also work as an astringent, moisturizer, cleanser and toner for the skin.

This type of traditional Chinese medical therapy may have sedating, warming, cooling and eliminating benefits. It has also been touted to help with sleep problems and may also stabilize the hormones, as well as balance the body’s metabolism and immune system.

A recent study published in the journal Integrative Cancer Therapies showed that Chinese herbal medicine may prolong the life of pancreatic cancer patients following prolonged therapy. On the other hand, an ongoing American government-sanctioned clinical trial wants to determine if Chinese herbal medicines can be a viable treatment for the symptoms of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

WHO Acceptance and Practitioners' Certification

According to CNN, Chinese herbal medicine has been included in the list of acceptable therapies under the International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems of the World Health Organization. The herbs used may be used singularly, or mixed together to produce different herbal formulations.

Unknown to many, Chinese herbal medicine practitioners have to pass a national board examination before they can be healers. In the U.S., information about this certification may be found at the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM).

TCM Services at Guan Physical Therapy and Acupuncture

If you want to try traditional Chinese medicine practices to cure your ailments, don’t hesitate to contact our certified practitioners at Guan Physical Therapy and Acupuncture. Aside from Chinese Herbal Medicine in Gainesville, we also offer acupuncture and physical therapy services. The special acupuncture techniques we use have been developed over five generations and are widely publicized in Chinese medical books. Learn more about Dr. Guan’s legacy here. For inquiries, call us at (352) 353-0288.

The material contained on this site is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE, and is not intended to be a substitute for independent professional medical judgment, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare providers with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your health.

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