Herbal medicine, herbalism, phytotherapy and botanical medicine are all terms which refer to traditional or folk medicine in which the cures or treatments involve using extracts of plants. The reason that plants have medicinal properties is probably because of the defense mechanisms of plants. This natural mechanism helps plants fend off predators like microorganisms, insects, and animals. These defense mechanisms work by making the plant produce certain substances within them that keep predators or diseases at bay. Practitioners of herbal and natural medicine merely found a way to acquire these substances to help humans fend off diseases as well.
Although some form of herbal medicine has been in existence since the era of the caveman, herbal medications have - at one time or another been used by people belonging to almost every culture of the world through history. However, in the ancient cultures of India such medicine has always been taken very seriously and ancient books on medicine unearthed in these parts of the world show that the herbal practitioners worked on perfecting their concoctions with every experience they had.
ADVANTAGES OF HERBAL MEDICINE?
The main advantage of herbal medicines and the reason these are gaining popularity in modern times is because they are completely natural medicines and hence do not have chemical components. This translates into fewer side-effects and a lower chance of the patient's exhibiting an allergic reaction to the constituents of the herbal medicine.