A Research Paper Presented to
International Language Department
Centro Escolar University
Joanna Mae E. dela Cruz
Ma. Lynne Queen B. Morales
Raemhelle Elaine Palad
Plants had been used for medicinal purposes long before recorded history. For
example, ancient Chinese and Egyptian papyrus writings describe medicinal plant
uses. Indigenous cultures such as African and Native American used herbs in their
healing rituals, while others developed traditional medical systems in which herbal
therapies were used systematically. Scientists found that people in different parts of the
globe tended to use the same or similar plants for the same purposes.
In the early 19th century, when methods of chemical analysis first became
available, scientists began extracting and modifying the active ingredients from plants.
Later, chemists began making their own version of plant compounds, beginning the
transition from raw herbs to synthetic pharmaceuticals. Over time, the use of herbal
medicines declined in favor of pharmaceuticals.
Long before the introduction of modern medicines and Western curative
methods, herbal medicines had been widely used in the Philippines.
The use of medicinal plants or herbs has been gaining popularity this past few
years in the Philippines and worldwide as more clinical proof emerges that validates
many of the age-old alternative medicines used by Filipino folks that has been passed
on. The curative effects of the herbs were tested by traditional healers on their patient.
The knowledge and skills on the curative application of any given herbal medicine has
been handed down from generation to generation.
Whenever a culture attempts to assimilate alien ideas, social stresses are bound to occur, especially when such ideas threaten the dominion of major economic and political interests.
Mistakes are likely to arise while attempting to implement these ideas. In the case of
Chinese herbal knowledge, its use by people unfamiliar with its rules and protocols
invariably leads to mishaps; either the herbs or formulas fail to work as expected, or
worse, side effects may result whenever herbs are used in contraindicated conditions.
In the political and economic realms, government regulators unfamiliar with the
unique characteristics of traditional Chinese medicine may impose restrictions upon
Chinese herbal practice that inhibit its effective application and suffocate its future
development within our culture.
Background of the study
The effectiveness of modern herbal practice suggests that we begin our search by
understanding the complete meaning of herbalism. Herbs are grown and collected from
all over the world. There is nothing magical about an herb; effective medicinal herbs
can be found everywhere that plants grow.
There is indeed a necessity in making life better by introducing natural herbal dietary
supplements in the country. Within the past decade, herbal medicine has gained
increasing importance, with both medical and economic implications. In developing
countries particularly, as much as 80 percent of the indigenous population still depends
on traditional systems of medicine and medicinal plants for healthcare. Widespread use
of herbal medicines has raised questions about their quality, safety, and efficacy. As
part of dealing with immense strategy, extensive task of reviewing the country’s
scientific literature of commonly used herbal medicines have conducted to promote
global harmonization of herbal health care.
A study of alternative medicine in the Philippines is, inevitably, a study of the origins
of its people and the amalgam of cultures and influences: Centuries...