What are Chinese Herbal Formulas?

If I had to answer in one sentence the question, “What are Chinese Herbal Formulas?” – My answer would be, “They are an herbal tea”.

The ‘Chinese herbs’ used the most in Herbal Formulas are:
Ginger
Cinnamon
Licorice
Chinese Rhubarb

Yes, these are the same ingredients found at your local grocery store. You didn’t know you were buying Chinese Herbs, did you?

Most of the formulas are made of those items above and other common dried
Fruits
Leaves
Flowers
or Roots of Plants

Around Portland, OR you can buy the dried ingredients and boil them in water to make “Herbal Tea”, that’s what Chinese Herbal Formulas are – a tea.  The Kan Herb Company (the company I send my patients to exclusively and have used for over 10 years), located in California, has devised an even more convenient way to ingest the formulas.  Kan Herb makes a huge batch of the tea, then they evaporate it, and distill it with a small amount of alcohol to keep it fresh. That way the herbal formulas don’t have to be refrigerated. And someone only needs to take a few drops of the formula instead of drinking a whole cup of tea. They also offer most of the teas in pill form too.

Upside of Chinese Herbal Formulas
They are Subtle (compared to western medicines)
They are more like food than like western medicines, so the body assimilates them much better
They are designed so there are no side effects
There is an Energy component and a Physical component to the formulas
They have been used and perfected for over 3000 years (if we lived in the year 1019, I would prescribe the same formulas to you as I would today!)

Downside of Chinese Herbal Formulas
They are Subtle, you might not be able to notice they are working. You will just find that you are getting better over a period of days or weeks.  Unless you have an acute problem, like a sinus infection, then the formula you would take will be a lot faster acting, and you would definitely notice it is working right away.
They usually have a bitter taste to them. In the USA we are not used to eating/drinking bitter things.
You can’t patent them, since they have been available for 3000 years – so drug companies can’t make any $$ off of them. (this is actually an ‘upside’ for the consumer as it keeps prices low in comparison to patented drugs)