Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) offers an extremely valuable, rich, lengthy, and extensive herbal medicine history. Within it are thousands of years of development and research which we benefit from greatly today. As opposed to some forms of herbalism and western medicine, Chinese herbs are often used in formulas instead of being used singularly in larger amounts. Formulas allow you to blend herbs to enhance their positive effects and reduce or eliminate any negative side effects they may have. These formulas take years and years of practice to master and many are kept within families and or generations of teacher-student transmissions. This rich tradition is a very valuable gift from previous generations.
The true benefit of this herbal tradition, as with acupuncture, is that it allows practitioners to blend formulas to match each patient and their signs and symptoms exactly. Instead of having a standard formula for a particular condition you can increase the clinical effectiveness of the herbs through this tailoring. For the patient this ideally means faster results with less side-effects.
Our Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) herbal database contains usage information for the majority of the herbs used in clinical settings around the world. We also list, for historical reasons, herbs which are no longer used (from endangered animals, for example). The herbs listed here may be ground into powders and put into capsules, cooked into teas, used topically, taken raw, etc. You should never attempt herbal treatment without proper training as some of the herbs are toxic and need to be prepared correctly and others can have side-effects without being used in proper amounts and/or mixed properly into appropriate formulas.
You may view the individual herbs by clicking on the first letter of the Chinese (pinyin) Name or by searching through other groupings such as by channel, properties, or functions & actions (which also contains summary/study notes for each grouping).