Chinese herbs were discovered through the experiences of Chinese people eating various animals and plants. By observing the healing properties and health benefits over thousands of years, Chinese medicine was born. Mostly are plants, including roots, bark, leaves, stems, flowers, shoots and seeds.
Each herb has its own flavor and property. There are five flavors: pungent, sweet, sour, salty and bitter. The properties are: cold, warm and hot. Food also has these flavors and properties.
Each herb has its own function. When we combine herbs it is called a formula. By combining flavors, properties and functions together, it can help each herb work better or can be used to reduce the toxicity of some individual herbs. Some herbs are used to lead the whole formula to a certain Meridian or body part. In this way, it can resolve the most difficult diseases. We very rarely use a single herb to treat diseases, just like we don't eat one single kind of food as a meal.
It is quite different from Western medicine, where western medicine primarily focuses on symptomatic relief, Chinese medicine mainly focus on treating the root of problems to fix the symptoms, balancing the Yin and Yang to maintain health.
Your body sometimes can't fix the problems itself. But it will try to communicate with you by showing symptoms.
For example, if your body starts to lose its balance, you may start to feel fatigue. If you ignore it, the body will try to tell you there is a problem in different ways. So you may start finding you are easy to bruise, your menstruation starts to bleed less, your digestion starts to go weak etc.
In this disease, these symptoms are all coming from one problem which is Qi deficiency. So we will use herbs to tonify Qi. Once the problem is solved, the symptoms will be gone. So does herbs have side-effects? Generally as long as Chinese medicine doctors balance the formula there are no side effect, it brings your body into balance. Once your body is in balance, overtaking of the herbs may have side-effects.
For example, GinSheng is a great herb, it gives you energy. But if you take it for a long time it can cause insomnia. But there are some herbs you can take on a regular basis to maintain your health, that do not have side effects from prolonged use.
A wise doctor once asked, "Are herbs food and is food medicine?"
The answer is YES. That is why we can also cook food with herbs and give
dietary advice. Through diet therapy we can also help you balance your
body. Want to know more about diet therapy or herbs?
Please contact us.