Wednesday, April 8, 2009


The term alternative medicine,is used in the Western World encompasses any healing practices that does not fall within the realm of coventional medicine,commonly cited examples include :chiropractic,herblism,traditional Chinese medicine,yoga and acupuncture.
Definition from Wikipedia,the free Encyclopedia
Pictures from WWW and Jackiechan and Malcolm
My grand-mother was a herb gather from the old south in the USA all her life ,she gathered herbs to make home remedies for her family and friends and the folks from the close by farms,some folks would drive from the city just to buy her herbs and homemade remedies.They called her the Herb Lady , we just called her Grand-ma.Remember the T V Hit Medicine Woman, well she was all of that and was a mid wife to.
I can still remember a couple of walks in the woods behind the farm,as she would walk along the paths,so well worn from many seasons of gathering the herbs and ,leaves and bark and berries and nuts, and all kind of stuff ,that she would use to make the home remedies that would keep her family and friends healthy and strong during ,the winter times when colds and flu season was there.My grand-ma and grand-pa had twelve kids and it was a full time job just keeping them all fed and healthy.How I wish I had paid more attention to her then ,instead of throwing rocks at the squirrels and birds and complaining that I was tired and" lets go home now." Grand-ma would laugh and tell me what each thing she picked or dug up was used for,that it was important for me to remember , because one day I may need to use the herbs and plants for my kids.I did remember some of the things she taught me on those trips gathering the herbs for her Home Remedies, but most of all I can remember how awful they tasted.
Have you ever used Home remedies for what ails you ?Do you still use them for some of your aches and pains ? Do they make you feel better ? I think a lot of what ails us is all in our heads anyway and just the thought of grand-ma or mother, and trying to get it just like they made it ,is great therapy, and all of a sudden we felt better .I still have a few of them that I use from time to time and of course , my sweet little wife Ciejay has me taking so many herbs for this and that , I expect I'll live to be at least one hundred.How about you ? Do you take herbs for strength and energy.
If given the choice,would you take the counter with the conventional medicine or would you take the medicine made from herbs and natural stuff.Many times I have found that the side effects from the doctor precribed medicine is far worse that what the meds are suppose to be treating you for.
Here is the Wikipeda definition for Home Remedies. A home remedy is a treatment to cure a disease or ailment that employs certain spices,vegetables, or other common items.home remedies may or may not have medicinal properties,that treat or cure the disease or ailment in they are typically passed along by laypersons,many are used as a result of tradition,or habit,or because they are effective in inducing the placebo effect.A significent number however have been demonstrated to effectively treat some ailments.Some popular examples that have been proven to be effective are as follows .
1. chicken soup for respirotory infection, colds and the flu.
2. willow bark boiled and in a tea to cure headaches and fevers.
3.duct tape for setting broken bones.
4.super glue to treat planter warts.
5.long cooked rice soup with herbs in Chinese Folk Medicine are also part of a healing repertoire.And the extra benefit for all Home Remedies and alternative medicines is most can be found in your kitchen or in your own backyard. Especially for those of us that live in the LOS. Malcolm


Martin in Bulgaria said...

Hi Malcom and CieJay,

You know what, there si so much we don't know about it amazes me. We use herbal rememdies here all the time, but we are advised to go on doctor's prescriptions all the time, bu then the medical profession and chemists are businesses aren't they.

I am fascinated with herbs and plants for both eatgin and health, so much so that I started my one blog on herbs and am learnign more and more about them each time I research a post.

Like you my grandparents used many rememdies that are passed down.

You are in country that believes strongly in alternative medicine and it shoud be looked into more. I'm not saying cnventional medicine isn't good, after all you wouldn't be here now without it Malcolm! bu tI do say that eyes need to be more open of natural cures rather than business oriented synthetic medicine.

Take Care

Martin and Galia

*lynne* said...

They way I was brought up, I didn't have much connection with traditional medicine/remedies of Malaysia/Asia.

But I can share that diseases of the liver (i.s. when I had hepatitis A) are treated with bitter stuff - the bitterer the better! So there's this one plant whose leaves you put in water and boil to make a soup of sorts, and I had to take it twice a day to help strengthen my liver.

Branching out from that, for the longest time, I also took tablets of neem, also a very bitter plant used in ayurveda for treating and strengthening the liver.

The liver is, after all, the most important organ in Asian medicine!

I love your pix of what I take to be a Chinese medicine shop. There are plenty in Malaysia, but like I said, I have next to no knowledge about what they sell and their uses.

Malcolm and Ciejay Burgess said...

Martin, thanks foryour interest in herbs too , I tried ti go read you herb times but could not hook up please send in e-mail to me the url. I take alternative when i can but, like you said if not for conventionalmedicine i would be long gone ha ha .

Lynne, Me and Ciejay take a herbal rice pill made by amata and it is suppose to help our liver too , after all i want to be a long liver ha ha .
If you google Asian traditional medicine and also Chinese Herbs for you health ,and just plain Home Remedys you will find lots of good reading if you find time .I hope all is well with your health now and we can never do to much to take care of ourselves. thanks for coming by Malcolm

Mike said...

Malcolm good post on an interesting topic.

Can I come at it from a slightly different angle.

Here in LOS you can walk into any pharmacy and buy just about any drug available-often very cheap compared to the West. On top of this Thai doctors seem to prescribe antibiotics for just about anything.

Now I too often see traditional medicine shops here but it does make me wonder what the average Thai takes- judging by the people I see in pharmacies I reckon its manufactured drugs as apposed to tradition herbal cures.

Martyn said...

First I must say how much I enjoyed the intro, the white kitten especially, I'm not too keen on cats but I could cuddle that one. Lets get the questions outta the way cowboy. Working as I do for a pharmaceutical company then I would go for the conventional medicine and no I've never taken anything more traditional than vitamin supplements if that counts. Thailand does however seem to have a different approach.

A few years back in WW's village one of her junior family members turned up at our house with an eye infection. Wi's mother went off and shortly after returned with a tree or bush leaf. Mama rubbed it over his eye for a good ten minutes and lo and behold the next day his eye appeared much better. I was amazed but still unconvinced, a position I still find myself in today.

You wrote your post with a lot of feeling and conviction, with great memories of your grandma pushing you on. I found the post most enthralling and one that should raise great debate. If the energy consumed has left you tired and weary then suck on a rose petal or take a pill. Up to you. Great post and best wishes to you and Ciejay.

Talen said...

A lot of traditional medicine has it's roots in home remedies and Asian cures.

Although as Mike said there are many traditional pharmacies in Thailand quite a few also sell traditional remedies as I found out last year when a kidney stone cropped up. Not only did the home remedy work I didn't even need any pain meds and passed the stone without knowing it.

There are more than a few doctors scouring areas of Asia and South America researching herbs and traditional remedies.

One thing is for sure, as Mike said, Thai doctors prescribe way too many antibiotics and usually 2 or 3 different kinds at once.

Camille said...

Thais in general are strong believers in herbal or traditional medicine. Here on Samui I've been to various addresses that my wife knows to pick up powders and creams for all kind of things for the kids and us self, my wife and me. Some of them work really well.

My father in law is also a well known healer and folk from all over the island come to see him to treat skin diseases.

On the side, almost everybody goes to see a 'normal' physician as well, so you never know what worked best, as long as either one works seems to be the consensus!

Malcolm and Ciejay Burgess said...

Hello everyone thanks for reading, and for the various takes on the different medicines avaliable to all of us . Like Camille said, and I agree as much as I would love to only use herbs and home remedies there are some things that keep me going to the doctors . Malcolm

MJ Klein said...

in Taiwan, Chinese medicine is covered by our national health insurance. Chinese medicine is base on principals that are just as sound as Western medicine, only different.