The usage of herbs to treat a variety of different ailments is universal, and exists in every human culture on Earth. Despite this, the largest use of medical herbs still occurs in societies which are not fully industrialized.
Because of the high costs involved with manufacturing modern medicines, many people living in developing nations simply do not have the the financial resources to pay for them, and as a result, they are forced to use natural herbs as an affordable alternative.
In recent years, many people living in industrialized countries have begin taking a second look at herbal medicines due to the rising cost of medicine and healthcare in their own nations.
There are a number of herbal systems that dominate the world today, and these systems are Chinese herbs, Ayurvedic medicine, Roman and Greek herbs, and Shamanic herbs.
Many of the pharmaceuticals which are currently used can be traced back to herbal remedies which were developed many centuries ago.
The WHO has indicated that as many as 80% of all people living in the world make use of herbal medicine as their main source of healthcare.
Because half the world's population (roughly 3 billion people), live on less than $2 per day, it is next to impossible for them to buy even basic medicines such as Tylenol.
In the United States, the alternative health industry has exploded within recent years, and an intense global search is being made for plants which can be used to create different dietary supplements.
Both botanists, pharmacologists, and microbiologists are looking in different parts of the globe to find natural chemicals that can be used in the treatment of numerous diseases.
The alternative health industry has become a billion dollar a year business, and this is driving the quest to find new plants or chemicals which are useful.
A number of statistics indicate that over 20% of all medicines produced in the United States have been taken from plants.
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