February 1, 2011
ToT CTR 4
Summary: This chapter in Trick or Treatment describes the pros and cons of herbal medicine. Many people resort to herbal medicine to treat their different ailments. But some of the treatments cause more harm than good. For example: St. John’s Wort can treat mild to moderate depression, but for someone with severe depression or a mental illness it does no good and could even make symptoms worse.
Personal Statement: I liked the tables in the book that showed whether or not the herbs/ natural medicine were shown to have a good effect on what they were supposed to. It was interesting to see how many things were thought to help some illness but really did nothing for it. I also liked the second table that listed the harmful things that some of the natural medicines could do to your body. I now know that even some of the “natural” ingredients in such medicines actually come from things like tiger bone or rhinoceros horn. It is strange because the people likely to use those medicines are more prone to wanting to save the environment and would be shocked to hear what is actually in their medicines.
Questions: 1) Do you think the risks outweigh the benefits of natural or herbal medicine? 2) Does the class think any of the authors’ statements are false in this chapter concerning what herbal medicines work and which ones don’t? 3) Are the authors likely to recommend herbal medicine to the public?