Herbal Medicine

For thousands of years, herbal medicine has been used by humans as a natural form of therapy which can be accredited as one of the predecessors to modern pharmacology (Kron, 2002). This form of alternative medicine, also known as herbalism, is a traditional or folk practice used to treat injuries or certain conditions within the human body. By definition, a herb has numerous definitions due to its broad application. A herb could be described as a plant without a stem made from wood, which typically withers each year or more. Some say that they are plants that have aromatic fragrances, usually due to there monoterpene content. And others simply say that they are plants that are beneficial in some way, shape or form (Define an herb, n.d.). 

For a long time, our ancestors were able to draw benefits from most parts of a herb which included:

  • Seeds
  • Leaves
  • Bark
  • Roots
  • Rhizome
  • Flowers
  • Fruit

These plant parts usually act as supplemental treatments that can be delivered in raw form or naturally processed. Herbs can be infused in teas and used as extracts for tinctures. In modern business, especially with the advent of e-commerce, many herbs are sold in the form of bulk powder, capsules or tablets. Previously, our ancestors found herbs in the wild. There were many cultures that based their findings on spiritual or superstitious beliefs. Some cultures treated there bodily systems based on the shape or location of the herb. Herbs and other plants are actually the precursors to many of today’s medicinal drugs. Many pharmaceutical medications on the market are extracts of traditional herbs.



Kron, J. (2002). Herbalism. Journal of Complementary Medicine: CM, The1(2), 27-31.

Define an herb (n.d.). Herbs add flavor to life. Illinois Extension. Retrieved January 24, 2024, from https://extension.illinois.edu/herbs#:~:text=In%20the%20botanical%20sense%2C%20an,for%20culinary%20or%20fragrance%20purposes.