So, presumably aspirin, which is derived from plants after all, has 'no record of toxicity'? This doesn't bode well.
...James Wong, a 27-year-old ethnobotanist (a scientist who studies how people use plants), wants to change our minds. He passionately believes that safe, natural remedies can be made from the everyday plants you find in hedgerows, the back garden or local garden centres.
...In Malaysia, where Wong grew up, everyone treated themselves with natural remedies. Food, too, was used as medicine...
The problem, Wong believes, is that there's a big cultural dividing line between conventional medicine, which is thought of as effective, proven and serious, and herbal medicine, which has the reputation of being a bit flaky.
But, as Wong says, up to 50 per cent of over-the-counter medicines are based on chemicals that were first isolated from plants. "Aspirin, for example, is made from the same chemicals that were first isolated from willow, which has been used for thousands of years as a painkiller.
...Wong, who trained at the Royal Botanical Gardens at Kew, is quick to point out that the herbs and plants he recommends all have a long history of use and no record of toxicity.
Friday, 27 February 2009
Grow your own drugs
No, not the good kind, there is a new TV series being heavily trailed, by that title: