Chinese Herbal Medicine
Nerang, Gold Coast

What is Chinese Herbal Medicine?

Originating in China over 5000 years ago, Chinese herbal medicine is one of the oldest and most continuous health care systems still used today. Its widespread use has helped people from all around the world with a broad range of issues and conditions.

A traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practitioner will detect where your body is imbalanced and causing illness, weakness or pain by using the traditional Chinese medicine philosophy and principles. They will then address the root of imbalance as well as the symptoms by selecting and combining Chinese herbs, aiding your body to improve function and normalise again.

Recently, modern research has started to explore the active ingredients in Chinese herbal medicines and finding scientific proof of how some of them work.

How Does Chinese Herbal Medicine Work?

Traditional Chinese medicine is founded on the principle of Yin and Yang- two opposing yet interconnected forces that make up all things in the universe. To find the root cause of a patient’s conditions, an experienced herbalist will seek to understand the unique balance of these forces within them.

In contrast to Western medicine, TCM takes a more holistic approach to healthcare, which means that several people who have the same illness could each receive a different diagnosis. As a result, each person may require working with tailored herb combinations in order to improve their condition.

At each appointment, we create a custom herbal formula that is balanced and maximised for your individual needs. The herbs used will be based on what will help improve your condition the most effectively.

What is Chinese Herbal Medicine Used For?

Herbal medicine is an ancient form of healthcare that has been used in China for centuries. Today, it is still used to treat a wide range of chronic and acute conditions.

Chinese herbal medicine can be used as a standalone treatment or in conjunction with other forms of Chinese medicine such as acupuncture. Research shows that Chinese herbal medicine is effective for treating a number of conditions, including:

  • Allergies
  • Arthritis
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Digestive disorders
  • Fatigue

How Long Does Chinese Herbal Medicine Take To Work?

The duration of time and herbs required varies depending on your condition and how long you have had it. After a few consultation sessions, your Nerang TCM practitioner will give you an estimate of the length time necessary to take the herbs. As your condition improves, we will re-evaluate and readjust your herbal formula as needed so that progress is maintained while allowing your body to heal successfully.

More often than not, severe conditions are remedied quicker than chronic conditions, which tend to be more complicated. Acupuncture may sometimes be paired with Chinese herbal medicine depending on the goal—better results or faster results.

We not only look at your symptoms but also the imbalances causing them. This means that big lifestyle changes are often necessary to see real improvement. Our best results come when patients stick with treatment until the root cause of their imbalance is resolved and they make diet and lifestyle choices that support this goal.

The Safety and Ethics of Chinese Herbal Medicine

FitLife Health on the Gold Coast only uses herbal ingredients that are approved by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), in consultation with the Endangered Species Certification Scheme. We never use any endangered animals or herbal products, and we only source herbs from suppliers who regularly test their batch for quality control of heavy metal and pesticide residue.

Be sure to tell your TCM practitioner about any medications you are taking, including vitamins and other supplements. This way, our experienced staff can adjust your herbal formulas for greater efficacy with fewer side effects.

It’s important to always communicate with your TCM practitioner if you are pregnant or think you might be, as they will know which herbs should be avoided during pregnancy. The team of practitioners at FitLife Health have the full training and experience in this area.

Chinese herbal medicine is generally considered to be safe but occasionally (as with all health treatments) may be associated with possible adverse reactions in individual cases.

All the Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners at FitLife Health on the Gold Coast are fully qualified, experienced and registered with AHPRA.

What herbs do Chinese use for medicine?

Chinese medicine has a long history of using herbs for healing. Chinese herbal medicine is based on the theories of yin and yang, as well as five elements (wood, fire, earth, metal, and water). Through this system, herbs are classified by their properties in order to affect specific areas of the body.

Common herbs used in Chinese herbal medicine include ginseng, chrysanthemum flowers, liquorice root, ginger root and ephedra.

Ginseng

Ginseng is believed to have antioxidant effects that can boost immunity and energy levels.

Chrysanthemum flowers

Chrysanthemum flowers are thought to be cooling and beneficial for vision health.

Liquorice root

Liquorice root helps balance hormones while also decreasing inflammation and supporting digestion.

Ginger root

Ginger root helps relieve nausea and indigestion, and is often used to treat colds and flu.

Angelica

Lastly, angelica is used as a blood tonic and helps with menstrual issues, anaemia, and skin conditions.

Herbal Formulas

These herbs are typically combined in a formula with other herbs to create an herbal remedy that targets the root cause of illness or imbalance in the body. Chinese herbal medicine can be used to treat a wide range of health conditions from digestive issues to respiratory complaints. It’s important to consult with a qualified practitioner before taking any herbs for medicinal purposes. With the right combination of herbs, you can use Chinese herbal medicine as part of your overall health plan for optimal wellbeing.

What To Expect At Your First Appointment

Your Nerang Chinese Herbal Medicine practitioner will assess your condition and make a diagnosis based on TCM principles from the symptoms you present with. This process involves a six page intake form and includes understanding your medical history, family medical history, lifestyle, diet, medications and supplements, past and present symptoms, as these all give insight into overall health.

At times, examining your tongue and taking your pulses can clarify further which herbs are most appropriate for you. Your practitioner will make a diagnosis and prescribe a combination of herbs for you. We predominantly use raw herbs that require some cooking at home. If you prefer granulated herbs instead due to time or space restrictions then we can make your formula with these. Although, you will need to consider that most of them contain some form of starch filler. These granules can be dissolved in water and consumed as a tea. You may also receive dietary and/or lifestyle advice.