History of Plants Being Used in Medicine

History of plants being used in medicine would be a great title for a book. When it comes to plants and the medicinal attributes they hold for society there is a long symbiotic history between humans and these plants. Throughout this article, we’ll take a look at the history of plants being used in medicine. Phytomedicine or herbal/botanical medicine is a reference used when referring to making medicines from plant flowers, berries, seeds, bark, seeds or roots.

Herbal medicine has been in existence for as long as recorded human history has been around. Ancient Egyptian and Chinese writings on papyrus give a description of medicinal applications for plants that date as early as 3000 BC. Indigenous cultures around the world such as Native Americans and Africans have utilized the medicinal attributes of herbs in healing rituals. The Chinese pharmacopeia is perhaps one of the most advanced forms of traditional herbal medicine documented. There are many herbal therapies that were widely used up until the early-to-mid nineteen-hundreds for a multitude of different conditions and symptoms.


Germany has between 600 to 700 plant-based medicines currently prescribed by an estimated 70% of German physicians. Turn to the United States however and it is quite the opposite. Anything and everything that could be plant-based seems to be synthetically reproduced in a controlled environment by a pharmaceutical chemist. These chemical Engineers synthesized plant base extractions and then slap a hefty price tag on them for profit. For many of the over-the-counter and prescription drugs, there is a plant base remedy that will do the exact same thing.

In the United States, the makers of dangerous and deadly drugs such as Oxycontin, Xanax, and others are allowed to conduct business like normal with the small slap on the wrist for fines when they are caught in a lie. Purdue Pharma has received several of these fines for lying about the dangerous deadly narcotic Oxycontin. More people are turning to Natural Remedies and alternatives than ever before.  in the US some of the most common herbal supplements utilized are Echinacea, Ginkgo Biloba, St. John’s Wort, Palmetto, and Goldenseal, Garlic, Valerian, Chamomile, Ginger, Milk Thistle, Primrose, and Feverfew.

As you can see the history of plants being used in medicine goes back as far as recorded human history. Since humankind has first wandered the Earth we have utilized the healing attributes of plants.  Scribes have written on Papyrus scrolls and chiseled in stone the healing notions that plants offer us. Many of the medical practices we used today are based off of plant therapies that were used safely and effectively for hundreds if not thousands of years. In fact, the large portion of our pharmacopeia comes from plant-based extracts.

Some of these plant-based extracts are synthesized by chemists in laboratories today. However, some of these plant-based extracts cannot be synthesized or replicated. Ones such extract is THC. While the medical community and scientists are struggling to unlock the secrets of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol a large portion of the culture globally already has done this by simply opening their minds to a 100% natural plant.

When you ask yourself about the solidarity of plants being used in medicine throughout history just look at some of the ancient civilizations and how they utilized botanical herbs for healing remedies. From the Chinese to the Greeks to India, Russia, Pakistan, and everywhere in between herbal medicine has been and still is part of cultures everywhere.

Cultivating your own medicinal herb garden is as easy as getting your hands on some seeds to start. When first getting started you can find a wide selection of herbal seeds available online. The best way to learn how to grow like a pro when it comes to growing the herbs you need is to jump right into it and literally get your hands dirty. In no time at all, you’ll have the skills necessary to produce quality plant-based medicines to help with many if not all of your ailments.

Opium, Nettle, Chickweed, Dandelion, Myrhh, Cannabis, Aloe, and Castor Bean are just a few of the plants that have been referenced as having medicinal properties and being utilized by ancient cultures throughout history. These same plants and many more are still being utilized by cultures around the globe today in the same tradition of how they were utilized hundreds of years ago.

Next time you find yourself suffering from any of the day to day ailments that so many encounter such as stress, anxiety, depression, pain, insomnia, restlessness, nervousness, inflammation, nausea or headaches, don’t reach for the pill bottle. Instead, research plant based natural alternatives. You might just be surprised to see that a common and accessible natural plant can provide you with the relief that you are so desperately in need of. After all, there is no reason why the history of plants being used in medicine should stop today.