Herbal Remedies and Supplements - Safe and Effective Alternative or Outdated Treatment Approach
Herbal remedies and supplements have been around for centuries and have recently seen a new ground swell of popularity,Â along with a healthy dose of skepticism for the medical community. In this article we will briefly look into the phenomenon of herbal remedies and supplements, all the while allowing you to draw your own conclusions as to whether these all natural options are right for you.
The naturopathic creed is to do no harm and that is the primary path that most proven natural medicine tends to travel. This approach to medicine works with a person's body, allowing the body to make the proper adjustments in order to either fight off an infection, balance hormones, or readjust body chemistry in an effort to cure the condition or ailment from the inside out. This general approach is known as full spectrum approach to natural healing.
But despite mountains of anecdotal evidence, along with a substantial amount of clinical evidence to support their efficacy, there are those who believe that herbal remedies and supplements are an outdated and useless method of treatment.
The argument against this line of thinking is that today we know more about natural remedies than ever before with numerous scientific students isolating the active ingredients and measuring their effectiveness. We know what works and what doesn't. So today's herbal medicine is a long shot from those ancient times when anything that grew or crawled was thrown into a pot to make that cure all elixir made famous by the traveling salesman and witch doctors of old. Furthermore, the naturopathic doctors who create the formulas of today are much more skilled at producing remedies that are targeted to specific illnesses, ailments, or conditions.
The disadvantage of herbal remedies and supplements is the speed at which many of them work. While some do work fast (especially the newer liquid formulas) others take time to produce results. For certain illnesses time is not a luxury that can be afforded thus other more conventional options are generally considered to be better overall alternatives, even by naturopathic doctors.
But slow is not always bad, especially when it comes to side effects. Let's explore an example of this. Cholesterol medications such as statins have been quite popular in recent years. They can reduce problematic LDL cholesterol dramatically in as little as two weeks by interfering with the livers ability to produce cholesterol.
The rapid decline in cholesterol causes a chain reaction in the body when it the drop is too sever e and lasts too long. When this happens cells fail to get the cholesterol they need to survive, producing muscle pain, cramps, and in extreme instances cell death resulting in kidney failure.
On the other hand there are a number of herbal remedies and supplements such as guggul gum extract and phytosterols that work to absorb excess cholesterol in the intestines and produce few if any side effects risks.
This is just one example of which there are many more. In the end it generally comes down to a question of speed of treatment with the risk of side effects or a slower acting longer lasting solution free from side effects.
In conclusion, the choice whether or not to use herbal remedies and supplements is all about personal preference.