The big difference between Western medicine and Chinese medicine is that the former treats the symptoms, while the latter treats the causes. For example, a Western doctor will give pain killers, antihistamines and antibiotics for the relief of the symtoms of influenza. A Chinese doctor on the other hand, believes that the influenza was caused by a temporary break-down of your body's immune system caused by imbalance of your Yin [negative, cool, female etc] and Yang [positive, heat, male etc] properties. He will therefore brew you a herbal concoction to restore the balance of Yin and Yang in your body and allow its immune system to function normally again. Most of the Chinese herbs that give energy and power such as Ginseng and Cordyceps [caterpillar fungus***] restore deficiencies in Yang. But some people, may suffer from too much Yang, and this also leads to fatigue, headaches, being prone to influenza, sore throat, teary-eyes, tinnicus, sniffles, swelling of the lymph nodes etc. In fact, a person with too much Yang cannot and should not take the 'strong' herbs like Ginseng, Gingko Biloba, Deer Antler or Deer Tail wine. His body, being already 'clogged up' will not be able to absorb the nutrients.
In Singapore, Traditional Chinese Medicine [TCM] and Acupunture are accepted by the government as valid alternative medical treatment. Besides having certified practitioners, manufacturers of TCM products are subject to regulations and inspection of standards and quality control. Recently, I found a good made-in- Singapore product to increase the Yin of the body, as opposed to the more common medicine that increase the Yang. Although the product is called "Nourish The Eyes", it does much more than that. It works wonders in restoring the body's balance of Yin and Yang, making your immune and detoxification systems function effectively. With this restored, all-round good health and strength follows naturally, provided you have a reasonable diet and exercise regime.
And it only costs $6.00 for 30 capsules. The words on the pamphlet that accompanies it says:
Tasks: provides the healing properties of enriching blood, encouraging production of body fluids, replenishing Yin and nourishing kidney, reinforcing spleen and lung, dispelling wind, clear heats, daily care of eyes and having effects for eyes-related problems.
Actions: Soothing the liver to subside interior wind, replenishing yin and improving eyesight
Indications: Used for blurred vision, eyes fatigue, dizziness, unbearable of light and easy to flood tears, caused by deficiency of liver and kidney.
It consists of about 30 ingredients, whose scientific names I am not familar with, but many of the ingredients have the prefix rhizoma, radix, fructus, semen or herba. While previously, Chinese herbal concoctions had to be weighed, mixed, ground to powder and boiled in clay pots over a slow fire, modern techniques of extraction, processing and packaging are now used to make their use more convenient.
*** see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cordyceps . Wild Cordyceps is getting rarer and more expensive as demand for it increases. However, AP Nutripharm a company in Singapore has devised a way to cultivate cordyceps sinensis on a large scale. The company owns a patent-approved technology that can cultivate the cordycep sinensis in just 9.5 days - compared with a year if left to nature.