5 Ways to Avoid Negative Effects of Herbs

There’s no doubt that herbs are beneficial in many ways, but they’re not all the same. Herbs have been used since time immemorial as natural, alternative medication to treat various ailments and relieve symptoms of recurring conditions and maladies. Most people believe that they are better than regular medicines and treatment methods because they have no side effects and are gentle on the human body. But there is a side to herbs that we are not aware of, the side that causes illness and sometimes, even death. They may be just plants, but they are forms of chemicals, albeit natural ones as opposed to the manmade variants we see in regular medication. And just as with regular medicine, we need to follow certain rules while ingesting herbs in order to avoid causing harm to our bodies:

  • Don’t mix herbs: Some herbs may be benign and beneficial when on their own, but when combined with others, they may form a potent mixture that could end up proving to have catastrophic results. You may break out in rashes, suffer severe stomach cramps, feel nauseous and so on. So unless you know that the combination of herbs you’re concocting is absolutely safe, don’t mix them and end up with a deadly cocktail.
  • Don’t mix herbs and regular medicine: It’s usually not advisable to dose yourself with herbal remedies even as you’re following a regular medication dosage. Medicines don’t mix well, and unless your doctor approves of your herbs and advises you to continue with them, it’s best to stay away from them because they can have adverse effects on your body in conjunction with your regular medicine.  Also Acupuncturists are well trained now days in drug-herb interactions if any. The best thing to remember is to tell your doctor about herbs you are taking and tell your herbalist what pharmaceuticals you are taking.
  • Don’t take herbs without knowing what they do: Even though your friends may swear by them, don’t blindly take herbs unless you know they’re safe for your body. All of us are different physically and we respond in different ways to chemical substances that we ingest as medicine. So if you’re not sure about an herb and what it can do for you, avoid taking it just because everyone you know is doing so.
  • Know your allergies: When you’re switching to a new form of medication or even changing your herbal tea, it’s best to first check that you’re not allergic to it. There’s no guarantee that herbs are safe just because they’re natural – there are various poisonous plants and shrubs, and if you’re allergic to the herb you’re taking, you could end up suffering without even knowing why. Try herbal remedies in small portions first before you use them regularly to ensure that they don’t cause any side effects.
  • Read package labels carefully: Most commercially available herbal remedies come with labels that are informative and that list all the ingredients and the proportions they’ve been used. Read them carefully to avoid those that you may be allergic to and prevent doing your body harm.

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