Herbal medicine is by far the largest component of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). At about 200 B.C., The Divine Husbandman’s Classic of the Materia Medica was written. This book is known to be the first reference book of Chinese herbal medicine. It includes information of 365 herbs - their taste, temperature, toxicity, processing methods, and indications. Many of those herbs are still commonly prescribed today. Since then, TCM herbalogy has continued to be rigorously tested and greatly advanced upon, and around 1550 A.D., another famous herb text was published with 1,892 herbs and over 11,000 formulas.
herbal classic, herbs are categorized into three groups. The first group
is called “food herbs” which are eaten as part of one’s diet for general
fortification, prevention, and maintenance. The other two groups are
called “medicinal herbs,” which are dispensed to each patient as an
individual formula based on one’s constitution, environment, and medical
condition.The herbs are available as raw herbs, powders, or pills.
Medicinal herbal therapy works in concert with acupuncture by providing
the nourishing support for the energetic “re-programming” and
“re-balancing” efforts of acupuncture. After diagnosing a pattern of disharmony and
administering acupuncture treatments, a TCM doctor often writes an
herbal formula guided by TCM diagnosis. Herbal formulas are composed in ways to enhance the potency of single herbs and reduce side effects.