You would think that with the advent of the Internet and its availability to almost everyone, knowing what to do to get healthy and stay healthy would be simple, yet the opposite is true.
The problem is simply too much information and too many vested interests. If you do a google search on any symptom you will get an overload of information. Some of this information will be correct, but much of it will not be. It has been said that if you want to either prove or disprove something you will find what you are seeking on the Internet. Unfortunately, this is true.
Recently we have seen research published that shows that drinking soft drinks increases the risk of dementia. A few days later research was published showing that drinking soft drinks did not increase the risk of dementia. It seems that research results are something you can buy, depending upon what you want to prove. All too often lately, published research in Peer Reviewed journals (supposedly the Gold Standard for research) has had to be withdrawn after publication when it was revealed that the research was flawed or biased and untrustworthy.
However, once research is published it often remains available online even if it is later withdrawn, and so false or misleading information is there to be found along with correct information. With regard to herbal products, much of the published research can be badly flawed because rarely is the herb material tested to see if it is actually what it is supposed to be. Many trials of herbal products are made using too low a dosage to have a therapeutic effect, yet a lay person doing the search would not be aware of this.
There are huge biases within the medical scientific community against herbal medicine. Pharmaceutical companies have massive wealth to share when it comes to research and naturally are not interested in finding an herb that is better than a drug in treating a health condition. If a scientist wants to continue getting research grants – well I leave it to your evaluation as to the expected results.
Another claim is that there is no research supporting herbs as medicines. This is untrue, but one question that should be considered with regards to this and that is; why would someone spend over $100,000 to research a plant to prove it is beneficial when they would not be able to patent the plant to recover their research investment and make a profit? Once proof of a plant’s efficacy is established that proof can be used by anyone and at no cost to them. Therefore, there is no incentive to investigate and research plants.
Plants have been investigated but mainly with a view to finding out what chemical constituent had therapeutic benefit so that it could be re-created artificially and then that chemical drug then patented for profit.
Naturopaths and medical herbalists undergo years of formal training to understand how herbs can be beneficial. We use both science and traditional use in our evaluation of an appropriate plant based medicine for our patients. Why traditional use? Because people are not generally stupid. A plant would not be used for a condition for thousands of years, if it did not give some benefit and many plants have indeed been used for thousands of years.
It is not a war between old disproved plant medicines and scientific proven modern drug based medicines. Any war is caused because there is a lot more money to be made in keeping someone sick enough to have to continually buy a drug but not too sick that they will try something else. If a drug cured a disease there would be no need to keep buying it and therefore no profit for the drug company. Drugs treat results, herbs aim to treat causes. Naturally there are situations where the only relief can come from a powerful drug, but usually that is because the damage done to the patient has been due to serious physical trauma or chemicals in diet, water, vaccinations and other drug therapy. Carefully research drug side effects and you will see what I mean.
If a person truly wants to get better it makes much more sense to deal with a person trained in natural medicines and avoid the possible mistakes of wrong information. It makes no sense to ask someone who is not trained in natural medicines about whether or not natural medicines will be effective. Asking a medical doctor if herbs would benefit is like asking the leader of the Labor party if you should vote for the Liberals – highly unlikely that you will get an unbiased opinion.
See a qualified and experienced Naturopath or Medical Herbalist for gentle and effective, qualified advice and treatment using natural medicines.