June 6, 2023

Since the pandemic, the proliferation of so-called “natural or alternative” plant-based medicine has increased. Is this safe? What precautions should be taken? Can it be combined with traditional medicine? Alicia Penisi, a researcher at Conisette and Professor in the Faculty of Medical Sciences, gave us some of the answers.
Is naturopathy safe? What precautions should be taken? Image: Freepik
label “Natural” Moves More Every Day on various areas of daily life. This approach is not limited to the distribution and sale of products, but is gaining ground in other critical scenarios for human integrity. One of the places where the natural perspective is also discussed is in medicine.
,natural medicine“It was booming before the pandemic, but power to from the first prison, during 2020 and 2021Information circulated recommending natural herbs, some vegetables and fruits, including cannabis For the treatment and prevention of coronavirus. In response, professional medical staff and Media -For example, Check– fine, they denied And reveled in a lot of that information. Although the importance was never denied Balanced and healthy diet for health benefits, He warned that these tantras were not a magic cure. to COVID-19.

To better understand the origins of herbal medicine and its debate with traditional medicine, university Alicia Beatriz Penisi, independent researcher at Conisat and professor in the UNCUYO Faculty of Medical Sciences.

Naturopathy is gaining a big place in everyday life. Image: Pixels
for pennies, Plant species historically important to human healthAs solutions were sought and found to deal with difficulties and pain in them: “There is no doubt that nature in general and plants in particular are intelligent.” teacher from this point of view Explained why plants are important For the comprehensive development of the people. In theory, he said: “One of the fundamental processes carried out by plants is photosynthesis, a vital activity by which carbon dioxide is absorbed and turned into oxygen, and thus renews the quality of the air we breathe,

He added other properties of plants that make our existence possible: “They provide nutrients for the earth and represent a natural remedy against environmental pollution. Similarly, they moisten the environment, one such condition that helps us to keep our mucous membranes and skin hydrated.”

He further said that Traditional medicine has historically used plants. “Lot’s of widely used drugs nowadays were originally derived from plant species”, highlighted, But how can we see it in reverse? The researcher indicated that pharmaceutical companies “collect empirical knowledge of traditional medicine and apply the scientific method to the synthesis and expansion of medicinal molecules present in certain plant species.”
The "natural" concept between traditional medicine and alternative therapies
Penicci noted that traditional medicine has used plants since prehistoric times. Image: Pixels

Certainly, one of the moments in which this question was most polarized was during the pandemic. To put us in context, Penisi reminds us of the scenario of fear created by the advent of COVID-19 and its consequences. “Both the scientific community and the population in general sought to increase the accumulation of knowledge about scientific advances that would allow a cure for disease,” he recalled.

The "natural" concept between traditional medicine and alternative therapies
According to Penisi, both traditional and alternative mechanisms must “learn to coexist.” Image: Pixels
that scene “Inspired people to look for answers in plants” Through the discovery of medicinal plants with antiviral, anti-inflammatory uses, to strengthen the immune system or to treat respiratory diseases”. now though Use and efficacy of certain plants for “respiration or inflammatory conditions in general”“It is scientifically proven; The truth is, “to date, none have been scientifically proven”. as an effective drug against COVID-19″, Penisi said.

This situation leads us to the initial question: traditional or natural medicine? The researcher was precise in the face of the dichotomy: “Both mechanisms must learn to coexist. This mutual respect is important, so that we can initiate an intercultural dialogue, finding points of agreement that will motivate us to improve the health levels of our populations.” Can you

Still, Penissi said Natural systems are compatible with traditional ones because they are “not a health hazard, are not based on misleading claims, do not abandon the scientific method”. and do not behave contrary to good practices and customs”.

He recalled that the use of medicinal plants “should not cause delay in medical consultation” nor “should it replace medicine prescribed by a doctor.” Noting the prevalence of plants as substances harmful to human health, the Conisat researcher said: “Like any medicine, plants can cause adverse reactions and intoxication, therefore informing a doctor about consumption of natural preparations Is necessary.”

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