THE EFFICACY, HISTORY, AND POLITICS OF MEDICINAL PLANTS
Abstract: Herbal medicine is the oldest and most widely used form of medicine in the world today. Yet medicinal herbs that formerly were held in esteem now are commonly dismissed as placebos. This article reviews the state of plant-derived drug research and discusses the efficacy and safety of herbal medicines within the context of the contemporary political and regulatory framework. The article also explores the relationship between medicinal plant use and temporally changing disease patterns.