3 popular medicines that originated from herbs

3 popular medicines that originated from herbs

You might be surprised by how many medicines that originate from herbs. Todays herbs are more popular than ever, about one-third of all Americans use herbal supplements to improve their health. Reuters states that the global herbal medicine market is expected to witness double digit growth and the market is growing exponentially.

To understand where we are now and what the future of herbal medicine holds, we have to go back to the beginning and look at the evolution of modern medicine. 

Initially we used plants for wellbeing and healing.

There is evidence of medicinal plants being used some 60,000 years ago. A burial site from that age was discovered in the 1960s along with eight species of plants buried with the man.

Even in recent history there is evidence of plant use. For example, plants like Yarrow were used on the battlefield in world war 1 to stop bleeding and aid healing. By world war 2 these plants were picked so that their active compounds could be extracted out of the plants. 

Fast forward, some of these same compounds naturally found in plants were now produced synthetically in laboratories. This age is what's called the synthetic age, an age that started around the 1900s where synthetic compounds that mimicked those found in plants were becoming popular.

Some of these compounds and medicines used today have their origins rooted in plants. 

Here are 3 examples of medicines that originated from herbs:


aspirin from white willow bark


Aspirin (salicylic acid) is used for inflammation, pain and fevers. Aspirin was modelled from the naturally occurring salicylic acid found in white willow bark. A plant used for thousands of years and mentioned by Hippocrates, known as the father of medicine.


quinine from Cinchona Calisaya tree


Quinine is a popular malaria drug. It has its foundations set in the Cinchona Calisaya tree from South America and was used locally to digestion, cramps and malaria. 


digoxin from foxglove plant


Digoxin is a heart medication used for heart failure and other heart conditions. It will originally isolated from the Foxglove plant around the 1930s

It’s said around 40% of medicines on the shelf have their origins somewhere rooted in nature. 

At Herby we believe in optimising daily life... more energy, better mood, better sleep and prevention being better than cure. For this reason we’re bringing back use of whole natural healing plants for the modern individual to easily benefit.

Try a Herby Week today, get your first box 20% off using FROMPLANTS

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