The Pros and Cons of Herbal Supplements
What are Herbal Supplements?
The word herbal itself refers to the medicinal properties of plants. It is a widely known fact that plants can synthesize a large number of chemical compounds that can be used to successfully perform biological functions, thus making herbal remedies a ‘natural’ option for most people. Herbal plants can be effectively divided into two categories including culinary, which as the name suggests refers to herbs used in cooking, and medicinal herbs, which are utilized for their healing properties.
Con of Herbal Supplements:
While herbal medicine has been used by humans since the beginning of history, it does not qualify as pharmaceuticals and falls under the category of dietary supplements. Given that, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) does not approve these supplements as they are released into the market. Thus one of the biggest and most alarming cons of herbal supplements is that there is no guarantee of their usage’s safety.
This is does not imply, however, that all herbal supplements are unsafe. It just underlines the importance of taking caution while consuming herbal supplements by looking out for their pros and cons.
One of the cons of herbal supplements is that, while it is generally known that herbal supplements are natural, some herbal supplements may react negatively and might not be a good substitute for pharmaceutical drugs when it comes to treating some very serious medical conditions. Other cons of herbal supplements may include blood thinning or exposure to weakness in immune systems over time. Thus herbal supplements cannot be relied upon as long term companions in treating sickness.
Pros of Herbal Supplements:
One of the most significant pros of herbal supplements is affordability. Since they do not need to be manufactured and are natural, most herbal supplements are much cheaper than pharmaceutical medicines. In a research conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO), many countries in Asia and Africa still use herbal medicine as the primary source of healthcare. The popularity of herbal supplements in Europe and the US has also been rising rapidly.
More pros of herbal supplements include the desire for potency and results, which results from disillusionment with ongoing treatment, and it is true that many times herbal supplements might have potent effects on a certain condition. Herbal supplements might be able to treat it more effectively than pharmaceutical drugs. However, this potency will rely heavily on how the herb was harvested including soil, exposure to light and water, etc.
Our final advice to you is this: don’t self-medicate. Take caution by visiting a doctor or herbalist, who will help you make the right choice of herbal supplements to use. Remember to weigh your decision by reading through all the pros and cons of herbal supplements meticulously before making a short or long term decision.