Derived from the Greek words phton, meaning ‘plant’ and therapela, meaning ‘therapy’, phytotherapy – or herbal medicine and should not be confused with homoeopathy.
Although both are medicinal treatments based upon the use of fresh herbs, their points of departure are quite different. Phytotherapy employs the use of whole herbs and homeopathic medicines are based on the carefully diluted extracts of herbal plants – i.e. whole plants versus plant extracts.
However, although fundamentally different, phytotherapy does owe much of its inspiration to homeopathy, as a great number of the plants used are common to both. The guiding philosophy behind phytotherapy is that it is not just one or two isolated plant substances that provide a cure, rather it is the totality of all a plant’s ingredients working together that generate the desired therapeutic effect.
Today, phytotherapy is accepted as a highly effective fundamental treatment. In fact in many Western European countries, it is used in combination with conventional medicines and is no longer viewed as an alternative form of treatment.
“Follow nature’s example and try to find the balance between tension and relaxation, between activity and rest, between intellectual and physical activity. Illness and suffering are caused by imbalance and disharmony, in whatever areas of your life they may occur” – A. Voge