Traditional Western Herbal Medicine Approaches

Modern Herbal Pharmacology 

The study of the interaction of  active principles in plants with the living body.

Plants contain various different chemicals (phytochemicals) just like any other living species.

Each phytochemical is used by the plant to maintain its health and have their own special functions and benefits within a whole plant extract medicinally.

Every plants has unique phytochemistry, and chemical balances can change depending on the season, growing stage of the plant and external circumstances, eg pest threats, soil conditions.

To the herbalist, these chemicals are not used individually, instead whole plant extracts are used that have a synergistic and holistic action on the body, mind and soul; however it is interesting to take a brief look at the some of the active consituents in our medicinal plants.

These include:

Vitamins and minerals

 Acids

Esters

Alcohols

Carbohydrates

Glycosides

Oils

Alkaloids

Bitter Principles

Saponins

Coumarins

Anthraquinones

Tannins

Pungent Constituents

Phytooestrogens