In order to extract most of the active ingredients, it is suggested to scoop out the medicinal residuesand wrap them with a piece cloth and squeeze out the liquid, so as to fully utilize the activeingredients and not to let them get to waste. Medicine for treating influenza, for example, is notsuitable for re-boiling. This is because the active ingredients of this medicine like peppermint andAmomum fruits can easily evaporate. If you "over cook" your decoction, it is best not to drink it as thechemical nature of the medicine has probably been altered.Top
Q : Can you explain what toxicity in Chinese Medicine means?
Traditionally, Chinese medicines are divided into three categories: those with heavy toxicity,minor toxicity and no toxicity. According to Chinese medicinal pharmacology, serious toxic effectsare coma, nausea, numbness in the mouth and in the limbs, which can be easily induced by drugssuch as dried toad venom, unprocessed croton fruits and cinnabar. Medicines with minor toxicity likeapricot seeds and ginkgo nuts, if used in high dosages, can cause mild breathing difficulties,abnormal heartbeat and dizziness. Drugs without toxicity, i.e., commonly used ingredients, are mildin nature and are less likely to have side effects. However, most TCMs are safe if applied accordingto syndrome differentiation and with the correct dosage for the appropriate length of time.Top
Q : Can TCM be used incorrectly?
The most outstanding characteristic of TCM is diagnosis and treatment based on
. When the syndrome of a specific disease is determined, the appropriate medicinewill be prescribed. For example, in the treatment of gastroptosis (abnormal drooping of the stomach),drugs that have elevation properties would be used and drugs that have a descending effect wouldbe avoided. If the
and the nature of disease are not clearly understood andmedicine is applied randomly, the disease may be aggravated or lead to other health problems.Some Chinese medicines are extremely strong and contain toxic ingredients. If the dosage isinappropriate or consumed incorrectly by mistake, it could lead to poisoning and even death.
declared in 1996 that there are 31 types of potent/toxicChinese herbal medicines. Always obtain prescriptions from a registered TCM doctor and follow their advice regarding preparation. If poisoning occurs, seek medical help as soon as possible.Top
Q : What is the best way to choose a proprietary Chinese medicine?
When choosing a proprietary Chinese medicine, it is important that the chosen medicine issuitable for your particular health need, so one should always read the
carefully. In addition,although different medicines contain the same herbal ingredients, one should always buy a productmade by a reputable manufacturer. As preparation of Chinese herbal products rely on special skills,a difference in manufacturing can have subtle differences in effects. The best way is to seek advicefrom medical professionals or the manufacturers of the medicine before taking the medicine. (See"