The functions of medicinal plants in our lives. Meeting the needs for explained substances. There is a saying: every medicine should be food for the body, and every meal – medicine. Energy metabolism may be broken due to a lack in the diet of some substances that the human body itself is capable of synthesizing and get them from food.
Many such substances belong to the class of vitamins. Treatment consists in the fact that lack of vitamin is compensated with plants that contain a lot of the desired substance. Sometimes it is sufficient to be the introduction of the human diet not only a vitamin but a precursor thereof, for example, instead of provitamin A - B-carotene. The normalization of the chemical composition of food is not only vitamins, but other compounds, the so-called essential amino acids, vegetable oils, etc. When there are not enough in the diet, the body consumes more other products, until it reaches the desired limit of incoming deficient substance. As a result of overeating obesity occurs, because the extra material is deposited in reserve, and that is one reason for the widespread of disease now - obesity. It is necessary to enter into the diet vegetable or other products containing the substance deficient for the treatment of diseases of failure.
Inhibition of pathogenic microflora - bacteria, fungi, viruses and the ones that cause inflammation and disruption of the individual organ systems and common disease of the body. This is achieved by using substances with antibiotic (fitontsidnym) effect against disease pathogens while at the same time are harmless or low-harmful to the human body. The system distinguishes between bacteriostatic effect of substances (when growth of bacteria stops, but they are alive and at change of conditions begin to grow again), bactericidal, that is deadly, destructive and the stimulatory effect. Of course, the disease-causing organisms are very diverse, and there is no herbal antibiotic for all of them, and therefore is used quite a wide range of plants. What harmful is for a microorganism can be a breeding ground for the other. Strong phytoncides in garlic, onion, horseradish, many spicy plants, which in the use with food are regulated by the size and composition of the intestinal microflora. Essential oils (lavender, mint, thyme, oregano) are harmful for the microbes, are in the air and get into the lungs, are deposited on the skin and mucous membranes.
Mobilization of host defenses. Our body has a strong immune system against many diseases, but not always, these systems are properly mobilized to fight the dangerous factor. The healing power of some plants is related to the fact that they mobilize the natural protective power of the human body. For example, influenza viruses form almost a nucleic acid molecule, stable to chemical effects, time with little protein coat. They are very difficult to influence, and therefore almost direct antiviral drugs. But there are substances that evoke antiviral mechanism in human cells.
Non-allergic effect, we can say the opposite to the previous one. Penetration of infection into the human body, especially foreign protein causes a violent protective reaction: fever, inflammation, histamine, which causes partial poisoning. All this is called an allergy, and is manifested literally at every infectious disease. However, very often not pathogenic factors cause an allergic reaction - flour, pollen from plants, wool and some compounds of different origin. It is necessary to remove and stifle the painful phenomenon factor that caused it in order to overcome the allergy of the body. Some of the plants and their mixtures exhibit an anti-allergy effect.
Strengthening of the secretory (excretory) functions. This is achieved by diaphoretic, diuretic, choleretic, laxative and causing sneezing, coughing and facilitate expectoration of sputum, enemas and other methods. This cleans the body, wastes that may be toxic as well as those toxic substances from infection. One of the basic principles of yoga - the traditional Indian method of maintenance of health - is speedy disposal of waste. Any stagnation, the accumulation of end products of metabolism inhibits it, which is very undesirable and causes the disease.
Increase blood flow to specific organs, making them changes in metabolism and their recovery begins. This is achieved by mustard plasters, compresses, rubbing, and internally, for example, stimulation of cardiac activity, digestion. When it comes to the whole body and to enhance its ability to live, Are used the so-called adaptogens (ginseng, Siberian ginseng) that stimulate the activity of the body perfectly and enhance its ability to tolerate stress, fatigue, and so on.
Cessation of bleeding, especially internal organs by increasing blood clotting, the formation of clots that close the wounded vessel. Tanning substances act in this way as well as those that narrow vessels and reduce blood flow to the damaged site.
Strengthening of cell division is necessary for the healing of wounds, ulcers, recovery of mucous and other integuments. So there are some vitamins, especially those found in sea buckthorn oil, or a mixture of humificated substances - shilajit. However, in cases of suspected cancer, the use of shilajit, as a stimulator of cell division, it is inadmissible because it can accelerate the growth of the tumor and make it impossible to rescue the patient by existing methods in medicine.
Amplification of enzymatic apparatus of body. Most metabolic reactions are carried out with the participation of biological catalysts - enzymes that thousands of times speed up chemical processes and easily convert large masses of organic substances for necessary products for life. Some reactions generally cannot be under the temperatures and pressures existing in the living cells and only the enzymes make it possible. Now it is known more than 1000 of enzymes, and moreover there are many so-called isoenzymes - compounds which are differed in structure from the first found molecule enzyme but perform the same function. Virtually every enzyme is a protein. Every cell in our body has a complete set of enzymes that it needs. Over time, however, some enzymes are eliminated from the system. So, the kids have the enzyme lactase, which allows to quickly assimilate the milk sugar - lactose. In adults, when they do not drink the milk, the enzyme disappears and lactose is not absorbed, creating in the stomach and intestine the medium for growth of bacteria. Such people must either fermented milk drink, wherein the lactose is decomposed into organic acids, or to introduce the enzyme in an organism artificially or by gradual habituation to milk to resume the work of enzyme.
Effects of some medical plants just due to the fact that they either contain active enzymes which are attached to our enzymatic apparat and amplify it (e.g papainaza of papaya - analogue of chymotrypsin in human gastric juice), or stimulate the formation of own enzymes that normalize state of health.
Effect on the nervous system. Some herbal substances, alkaloids in particular, have a very strong influence on the central and autonomic nervous systems, and it is used for treatment. This influence can be exciting, invigorating and soothing, relaxing, hypnotic. Using materials of this type can be achieved the effect of anesthesia, which is used in surgery and in some methods of treatment when it is too strong reaction of nerves prevents the normalization process. Neurotropic substances of cases can only be taken under strict medical supervision. They can cause poisoning or drug addiction. The biochemical mechanism of this effect on the nervous system is far from being clarified and there are a lot of assumptions.
Science knows a lot of other mechanisms of the effect of medicinal plants. A particularly important influence on the central and peripheral nervous systems, as man is a highly organized human being, and the state of its nervous system and mental activity depends on the functioning and, consequently, the health of all of its other systems. There are also methods of purely mechanical action, having a softening, ambient action, they are used when necessary to facilitate expectoration or normalize the digestive system.