Ayurveda originated in our country and became popular in the Western countries in recent times. However, for it to be widely accepted and extensively used its efficacy has to be strongly reassessed in view of the present era of advanced science and technology. Herbal drugs can compete in commercial market only by adopting evaluative techniques as used in modern science. Natural products testing through scientific clinical research assumes great importance in this context.
Herbal medicines are being popularly used by large populations around the world due to their long therapeutic history. At the same time, issues of quality assurance and quality control are hampering its wider acceptance. Due to the very nature of their composition, where a number of active ingredients in different combinations determine the overall efficacy, establishing standards of quality control for raw materials and bringing about standardization of finished product poses a big challenge.
Herbal formulations have an age old history of being used by humans in various countries like Egypt, China, Germany, Greece, India, etc. Ethnobotany is a scientific study of use of plants by human beings to make valuable contributions to society and is recognized as an effective way to discover future medicines. Researchers have in early 21st century identified around 122 compounds used in modern medicine which are derived from plant sources. Pharmacologists, Botanists and Microbiologists all over the world are combing the earth to find from nature the potential cure for many diseases.
There is a tradition of using medicinal plants in day to day life in many countries all over the world. As per WHO (World Health Organization) estimates, about 80% of the population in developing countries still use traditional medicines. With a vast treasure of valuable medicinal plants and people opting for natural remedies, there are tremendous business opportunities in herbal industry in many developing Asian countries. This phenomenal scope for meeting the global demand will also lead to economic upliftment of these countries.
The Western countries are turning more and more towards using alternative or traditional forms of medicine due to their known therapeutic abilities. Besides, the use of herbal drugs is becoming increasingly popular due to increasing consumer awareness on ‘green’ initiatives. However, for the herbal drugs to gain widespread acceptability and use there is a need for laying down basic manufacturing standards for the herbal industry.
Cosmetics have become an integral part of every woman’s life. In today’s times, the average male has also become conscious of his looks and appearance. More and more people are leaning towards cosmetic products that can give results sans the side effects.
Reasons for growth of the cosmetic industry
Since the times Indian women have been crowned at various beauty pageants, the cosmetic industry in India has come much into limelight. It has witnessed a steady growth over many years and the increase in fashion consciousness and purchasing power of the people is going to add to this growth momentum. Continue reading
Herbal formulations are increasingly sought out as medicinal products, dietary supplements and cosmetics in recent years and can be easily bought over the counter at pharmacy stores or health food shops. Herbal medicines originated firstly in the Asian countries before spreading to the West and today they are being seen as therapeutic agents for several chronic diseases. Continue reading
Natural products are an inexhaustible mine for unearthing new herbal drugs and drug leads in India. Major percentage of drug molecules come from natural products and in fact, Indian natural products obtained from traditional medicinal plants which have a mention in our ancient texts have been largely responsible for the boom in drug discovery. Continue reading
Forskolin shot into limelight in recent times because of being hailed as the new weight loss buster on a popular American television show. It was widely promoted to be the sure-shot solution for a rapid belly melt and becamesensationally popular. Besides being touted as a weight loss supplement, it had gained fame for being helpful in treating leukaemia, angina, high blood pressure, glaucoma etc. Continue reading
The use of medicinal plants for treatment of various diseases has been prevalent in India since ancient times. Substances which have therauptic properties can be present in any part of the plant such as the leaf, bark, roots, stem, flowers, seeds or fruits. These medically active chemical components present in plants are known as phytoconstituents or phytochemicals. Phytoconstituents are being closely studied for their antibacterial, antimicrobial, antiprotozoal and other pharmaceutical functions. Continue reading