Herbal medicine is taken on its own or as a conjunctive treatment with acupuncture or traditional medicine. Most expats or foreigners from non-Asian countries may not be aware of this but the general idea is that one or more herbs align with each bodily organ, and that the application of plant materials affects the functioning of that organ. Herbs are still heavily used in Saigon. Their purpose is to strengthen and build the body, fight a cold, stop bleeding, eliminate abdominal bloating and relieve constipation.
Oriental pharmacopoeia consists of thousands of herbs made from plants, minerals and animal products. Herbal formulas are usually concocted from three to 20 herbs. These combinations supplement the actions or improve unfavourable effects of certain herbs in the formula.
For information on traditional medicines go to Your Guide to Saigon’s Most Popular Traditional Medicine Techniques