Herbal medicine is used to treat most conditions seen by Chinese medicine doctors in China, Taiwan, and Japan.
This is mainly because there are so many patients that the most time efficient modality is preferred. But also because herbal medicine is better than acupuncture at either nourishing or draining physiological systems, while acupuncture more subtly balances them.
Chinese herbal remedies are traditionally dispensed as a combination of medicinals that needs to be cooked in water. In China this is how they are nearly always dispensed. In some other countries herbal remedies are dispensed as granules that are made by cooking the herbs and concentrating the result. Hardly ‘alternative’, each year in Taiwan alone there are 15 million Chinese Medicine consultations and 1.3 million kilograms of granules are dispensed.
While granule prescriptions are convenient for patients faster results are achieved if raw herb decoctions are used. The individual herbs have synergies that makes the prescription more powerful when everything is cooked together. It also benefits patients to take an active role in their own health so we prescribe raw herbs to those who are prepared to cook their herbs.
Unfortunately, Chinese herbal medicine doesn’t taste very good.
Preparing raw herbs is easy, there’s a video on how to do it here: