What are the different types of natural remedies?
Natural remedies fall into a range of categories, these include:
- dietary supplements
- flower essence therapy
- herbal medicine
Dietary supplements Dietary supplements are natural remedies containing nutrients, herbs and other natural ingredients that are thought to enhance health. Commonly used in non-medical nutritional therapy, dietary supplements are taken by people who wish to enhance their intake of certain vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. Some dietary supplement natural remedies are made from herbal preparations; these types of supplement are usually taken to prevent, treat or try to cure a variety of illnesses and ailments. Flower essence therapy These natural remedies are made from dilutions of the petals found on flowers. The most well-known type of flower essences are called Bach flower remedies, named after the English homeopath that developed them in the 1930s. The belief behind flower natural remedies is that flower petals contain certain healing properties. Flower remedies are mainly used to treat emotional conditions including stress, anxiety, depression and sleep disturbances.Tests on flower natural remedies have proven to be inconclusive, with evidence suggesting that they only work by having a placebo effect. However, many people still use flower essence remedies and believe that these natural products “work” and help them to enjoy a better level of emotional well-being.
Herbal medicine relies on the use of herbs and plant extracts to promote good health. Many traditional natural remedies - and some modern medicines -have their basis in herbal medicine. The source of this practice derives from the historic growth of medicine, when (centuries ago) people had to rely on the natural world around them to provide relief from pain or chronic symptoms, such as constant coughing. The only place to locate things that may provide some source of relief was from roots, berries, leaves and herbs and spices. So, before the invention of modern medicine, the plant world was the number one source for home-based remedies. Experimenting with concoctions and blends of these materials into teas, powders or ointments was a common sense method of trying to heal a family member or friend or to relieve his or her pain. This was the only known way to treat and cure diseases and illnesses hundreds or thousands of years ago.
Of all the natural remedies available, herbal medicine is the one that has some scientific basis. Studies have shown that some herbs and plant-based natural remedies can be effective in treating minor illnesses and ailments. Similar to traditional medication and prescription drugs, some herbal natural remedies can have adverse effects on the body. By example, a person can have an allergic reaction to certain prescribed medications (e.g., codeine) as well as certain herbal compounds. Therefore, it is critical that you consult a qualified herbal practitioner and your treating medical doctor, if you want to try natural remedies made from herbs.
Homeopathic natural remedies are preparations made from highly diluted substances that are known to cause adverse symptoms in healthy people, when taken in large quantities. In using homeopathic remedies, only very small amounts of the ‘symptom-causing’ substance are used in creating homeopathic natural remedies.
The theory behind homeopathy is that small amounts of a substance that may otherwise be toxic to a human can trigger the body’s natural response to rid the body of the harmful “intruder.” So, following the theory of homeopathy, if you want to cure a condition you must first put something similar to the problem-causing condition into the body, in order to stimulate the body’s natural healing system to combat it.
Using natural remedies
Before using natural remedies, for any reason, it is vital that you consult your doctor before doing so. This is because some of the natural remedies that you can buy, especially online, are not medically proven and may be dangerous to your health. Some natural remedies are not suitable for people that have certain medical conditions. For example, a patient on Coumadin as a blood thinner may take an herbal compound that FURTHER thins his or her blood and cause internal hemorrhaging by inadvertently taking the natural remedy along with a powerful blood-thinning drug. Always discuss your plans with your doctor and avoid self-medicating yourself into a far worse situation.