From the earliest times mankind has used plants in an attempt to cure diseases and relieve physical suffering. Primitive people in all ages have had some knowledge of medicinal plants, derived as a result of trial and error. These primitive attempts at medicine were based on speculation and superstition. Most primitive people have believed that disease was due to the presence of evil spirits in the body and could be driven out only by the use of poisonous or disagreeable substances calculated to make the body an unpleasant place to remain in. The knowledge regarding the source and use of various products suitable for this purpose was usually restricted to the medicine men of the tribe. As civilization progressed the early physicians were guided more and more by their observations. In all the early civilizations there was much interest in drug plants. In India many drugs were in use. There are Sanskrit writings in existence which tell of the methods of gathering and preparing drugs. Medicinal Plants is a comprehensive and scientifically accurate guide to the best known and most important medicinal plants, Including those of special commercial or historical interest. This book contains: Medicinal Plants : An Introduction - Medicinal Plant and Their Traditions - Health Matters in a Changing Community - Acquiring Herbal knowledge - Herbs as Medical Intervention - Practice of Treating Ailments and Symptoms - Glossary The book will appeal to both lay persons and those with a professional interest in medicinal plants. It is an essential reference guide for health care professionals - doctors, nurses and especially pharmacists- or anyone with an interest in medicinal plants and their uses.
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