Herbal And Natural Medicine Essay

1333 words - 5 pages

Herbal and natural medicine is becoming increasingly popular in 21st century culture. It may be surprising to some that many of these herbal treatments and medicines have been around for centuries and are the basis for both commercially prepared medications, as well as the chemical manufacture of new pharmaceutical compounds (Phaneuf, 2005). One of these compounds, which has influenced chemistry and medicine for centuries is willow bark, which contains the chemical salicin (Boon, 2009). Its origins and discovery, as well as the historical culture, have influenced its incorporation as the common pharmaceutical preparation known as aspirin.
Historical writings of Hippocrates (460 BC-377 BC) refer to the use of a white powder made from the bark and leaves of willow trees for pain relief and fevers (Bellis). Native American lore also reports the chewing of willow bark and preparation of willow water for ailments such as toothache and headache (Phaneuf, 2005). In the 1700’s Edmund Stone, While trying to find a substitute for cinchona bark used for treating malaria, began experimenting with white willow bark and found it to be highly effective in treating pain and fevers (White Willow Bark). In 1826, a highly impure version of salicin was reported by Brugnatelli and Fontana (Bellis). Johann Buchner, in 1828, in the search for the active ingredient in willow bark, isolated yellow, needle-like crystals which he named salicin (Bellis). Soon after, Henri Leroux improved the extraction procedure, and in 1838, Raffaele Pira was able to split salicin into a sugar and an aromatic compound (Bellis). He converted this aromatic compound by hydrolysis and oxidation to the compound known now as salicylic acid (Bellis). In 1899, the German scientist, Felix Hoffmann, who worked for a company known as Bayer, neutralized salicylic acid by buffering it with acetyl chloride and sodium, producing acetylsalicylic acid, commonly known as aspirin (White Willow Bark and Salicin). Hoffman’s discovery was the result of his research for a remedy to relieve his father’s arthritis, and became the aspirin familiar today (White Willow Bark). The name aspirin comes from the “A”, representing acetyl chloride, “spir” from Spirea ulmaria, the plant the salicylic acid came from, and “in”, a common ending for medicines at that point in time (Bellis). Within the matter of a few short years, aspirin was one of the most widely used drugs available (White Willow Bark).


The genus Salix contains a number of species which are native to North America, Europe, and Asia (Boon, 2009). The trees range in height from 30-70 feet, have soft “willowy” leaves, and a soft bark that is easily separated from its branches (Boon, 2009). The phenolic glycosides responsible for its therapeutic benefits are commonly found in its bark, as well as its leaves (Boon, 2009). White willow (Salix alba) is commonly found in the United States. It is also commonly found on the European continent. Other common...

Find Another Essay On Herbal and Natural Medicine

The Use of Complementary Alternative Medicine

1184 words - 5 pages general medical conditions. A study included in the National Library of Medicine states that 193 patients of a 316 patient study used Complementary Alternative medicine following a cancer diagnosis. Alternative medicine comes in many different forms including herbal, acupuncture, and massage therapy. Herbal treatments is a form of a dietary supplement that uses natural plants and Herbs as a means of treatment for conditions or illnesses in a

Conventional Medicine vs. Alternative Medicine Essay

1741 words - 7 pages believes that they can be cured of their ailment by the use of only CAM treatments (Astin, 1998). Another reason as to why people turn toward complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) is that one might have an aversion to doctors. Some CAM treatments include; therapies, herbal medicine, and acupuncture (Collinge, 1996). In the early life of medicine, what is now thought of as complementary and alternative medicine was all that there was for

Herbal Extracts and Hormones

1606 words - 6 pages introduced into the herbal industry. With its aid, herbs can become reliable and we can count on receiving the same dosage from capsule to capsule. The future of herbal medicine is very bright. People are rediscovering plant remedies and are once again looking to nature for the natural solution to the ills that man seems to be heir to.With the growth of the herbal industries, Americans will join the Europeans in taking charge of their own first

Entrepreurship - Hung Fook Tong, A Hong Kong based Chinese Herbal drink company

3962 words - 16 pages products, I have chosen Hung Fook Tong ( HFT) for my analysis assignment. Found in 1986, HFT is a large herbal tea enterprise with chain stores, manufactories of health products and bottled herbal drinks. It is determined to devote itself to the search for a perfectly natural path to health for the benefits of mankind and to hand down the fine tradition of Chinese herbal application.Coincidentally, one of my friends had previously worked at HFT during

Health Achivements and Challenges in Bhutan

1250 words - 5 pages key aspect of her lecture was to give some awareness on traditional medicine and how it helps people to cure diseases with purely herbal medication. She further states that the main aim of the traditional Medicine is the production of safe, effective and high quality traditional medicine in the country. They have challenges due to limited raw materials and poor scientific evidence which leads to complications in doing research. She also talked

The Development of Ancient Medicine & Influences

1745 words - 7 pages /additions. It has also been used to treat antibiotic-resistant infections. Egyptians were strong believers of medicine. Their medicines have one goal ahead of other countries: their methods of healing were not performed by witch doctors, as in tribal communities at that period of time. Also, magic, herbal remedies, and gullible beliefs were not practiced. ‘In Egypt, the men are more skilled in medicine than any of human kind’. (Acknowledged by

Holistic Medicine

1208 words - 5 pages gives a brief summary of how holistic medicine was first used and when it came among us. The ancient Greeks were the ones who trialed around with plants and herbs to make home remedies for curing the ill. Theophrastus was one of the ancient Greeks who wrote a lot about herbal medicine along with Socrates and Plato who also wrote about botany and holistic healing through herbal medicine as its stated in (The Ancient Greeks and Holistic Medicine

Holistic Medicine

1893 words - 8 pages , doctors, clinics, and pharmacies." Acupuncture treatment. 13 Oct. 2013 . "Behavior modification." Wikipedia. 11 Sept. 2013. Wikimedia Foundation. 15 Oct. 2013 . "Discovery Health." Discovery Fit and Health. 15 Oct. 2013

Traditional Medical Systems

777 words - 3 pages , people ought to be concerned about the possible unwanted side affects that can result from using some of these alternative herbal medicine products.The Five Phases Theory, otherwise known as Wu Xing is used for describing interactions and relationships between natural elements and body organs. According to the Five Phases Theory, it is not necessarily the elements and body organs that are of the most importance, it is about how they interact and

Methods and Myths of Traditional African Medicines and its Place in Modern Society

1617 words - 6 pages , who along with herbal remedies uses rituals to help diagnose and treat health problems. There is the ritualist-herbalist, who bases healing rites on the attributes of the specific spirits deemed responsible for a patients problems. And then there is the spiritualist, who performs socio-cultural rituals and divination. His therapeutic activity extends beyond illness to problems of daily living. Even in the profession of natural medicine, there

Chinese medicine History

1249 words - 5 pages is nutrition therapy. The only difference betweennutrition and herbal therapy is that nutrition tends to be more appetizing thanthe herbal tea formulas.(21)The fourth treatment is Acupuncture. It is the gentle insertion ofhair-fine needles into specific points on the body to stimulate the flow of Qior the natural healing energy.(22)Chinese medicine views human health and disease in terms of functionalentities and disease-causing influences that

Similar Essays

Herbal Supplements – Take Them Or Not Take Them?

1026 words - 5 pages Many people believe that herbal products are safe since they are labeled as natural and are legally sold. However, some herbal supplements can cause health issues. Also, herbal products are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) like over-the-counter and prescription drugs. Products labeled as natural does not always mean safe when it comes to herbal supplements. Herbal Supplement Use According to the National Institute of

An Analysis Of The Use Of Alternative Medicine

1638 words - 7 pages widespread and pursued form of alternative medicine is herbal therapy, yet there is a lack of data to support herbal therapy’s effectiveness in the treatment of disease or injury. Herbal therapy is also known as botanical therapy, and involves the use of natural growing plants that lack woody stems as a cure for many conditions. One double-blind clinical trial performed by the U.S. government tested the efficacy of the herb St. John’s wort for managing

Herbal Remedies Used For Weight Loss

1232 words - 5 pages added in herbal products, one is the fact that, manufacturers rarely declare the existence of adulterants on the including product’s labels and if mentioned, it usually isn’t the accurate dose. (4)Major risk arises with overdose cases or with individuals taking prescribed medications along with adulterated herbal products. Chemicals available within the prescribed medicine could react with the added adulterate. Being aware that plant’s extracts can

Herbal Medicine Essay

1540 words - 6 pages natural remedies to many everyday illnesses. Natural medicines have been used through out the history of the world. There are records of the Egyptians using them in 1,600 BC. There are scriptures that date back to the Yin dynasty in 1,500 BC. The Old Testament also has many references to herbal medicines. The ancient Chinese were experts at natural medicine. They were experts on using plants, animals and minerals to heal themselves(7). The Chinese’s