Chinese Herbal Medicines may be raw, powders, liquid, pills or capsule preparations depending on the herb and its intended use. Different herbs have different properties and can balance particular parts of the body.
A well constructed formula maximises the effectiveness for treating a particular condition, while counteracting and minimising the unwanted effects of an individual herb. Today, there are over 450 substances commonly used in Chinese Herbal Medicine. Some of the ingredients you may find in your kitchen, such as ginger, garlic and cinnamon, while others such as chrysanthemum and peony flowers, are more likely to be found in your garden. And many of the substances you may never heard of before; chai hu (bupleurum), di huang (rehmannia), and huang qi (astragalus). Some substances that were used traditionally are no longer part of modern professional Chinese herbal medicine practice. For example, traditional remedies that are derived from endangered species have been replaced by other substances with similar actions.
A qualified practitioner is able to prescribe a Chinese herbal formula that specifically matches and treats individual health problem based on practitioner's diagnosis that taking into account the state of the patient's Yin and Yang, and the elements that are governing the affected organs. As patient's condition changes and improves with treatment, the Chinese herbal treatment is also adjusted and modified until the desired health outcome is achieved. Chinese herbal medicines are prescribed either singly or made into formulae which take into account the individual therapeutic action of each herb and as well as the effects when combined together.