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What is the difference between a drug and an herb? The best answer is: An herb is a plant or plant part used in its entirety, while a drug is a synthesized copy of one chemical component, such as a component found in an herb.

Herbalists prefer using the whole herb and believe that one of the reasons why herbs have fewer side-effects is because of a balance of naturally occurring ingredients. Pharmaceutical companies like to isolate chemicals so they can produce a "pure" concentrate, acquire a patent, and reap large profits. Whole herbs can't be patented so there is little profit potential for the drug companies.

Every herb consists of hundreds or even thousands of naturally occurring chemicals. The actions of most of these chemicals are not understood, but it is known that an herb's total effect is a result of the combination. Some chemicals have synergistic effects on others increasing their activity. Some modify the effects of others reducing undesirable side-effects.

Scientists and herbalists will often use the term active, as a noun, to refer to what they consider to be an "active" ingredient of an herb. For example, hypericin and hyperforin are considered to be the actives in the herb St. John's wort. This is useful when it comes to standardizing an herb or when testing it for quality, but it is a little misleading if we believe that the actives are the only beneficial ingredients in the herb. The benefits that St. John's wort provides are not just a result of these two chemicals, but of a synergisticinteraction between these two chemicals and a host of other naturally occurring chemicals found in the herb.

Pharmaceutical companies often make the mistake of isolating an active from an herb, or extracting that active out of the herb without the herb's other naturally-occurring ingredients; or even worse, of making and producing a synthetic copy of the active. What they end up with is a drug that is far from what nature produced—without the benefits of the synergistic interactions of the herb's original ingredients—often resulting in negative actions or undesirable side-effects.

 

Herbalism as "Alternative Medicine"

Sometimes people speak of herbalism as alternative medicine. The implication is that the conventional corporate pharma-toxicological medicine as practiced in the Western world is the standard, and that anything else is an alternative. But most herbalists see it the other way around. Herbs have been around for millennia. The World Health Organization estimates that healing herbs are currently the primary medicines for two-thirds of the world's population—or some four billion people. Most of the tools currently used by modern medicine, including most of the drugs that are in use today, have only been around for a few decades or less. If anything is an alternative, historically speaking, it is the pharma-toxicological medicine that is currently practiced in Western nations.

(source : http://www.theherbspecialist.com/difference-between-herbs-and-drugs.html)

 

Statements made on this website regarding the herbal and natural products offered on this website have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration as the FDA does not evaluate or test herbs. This information has not been evaluated by the US Food and Drug Administration, nor has it gone through the rigorous double-blind studies required before a particular product can be deemed truly beneficial or potentially dangerous and prescribed in the treatment of any condition or disease.

 

The information presented on this site is provided for informational purposes only, it is not meant to substitute for medical advice or diagnosis provided by your physician or other medical professional. Do not use this information to diagnose, treat or cure any illness or health condition. If you have, or suspect that you have a medical problem, contact your physician or health care provider.

 

The products offered on this website are not intended to treat, cure or prevent any illness or disease. If you have or suspect that you have a medical problem, consult with your physician for diagnosis or treatment. Use herbs as per instructions and always watch for any allergic reactions. You should always carefully read all product packaging and labels. Always consult your physician or health care provider before using any herbal products, especially if you have a medical problem.

 

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All informational material, descriptions and representations have been provided by the manufacturers of the listed products and are subject to change. Sartikaherbal.com can not, and will not, assume any liability for any manufacturers descriptions of these products or for inaccuracies or misstatements about products.

 

 

 

 

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