Comparing Chinese Herbal Medication And Modern Treatments Sociology Essay

Comparing Chinese Herbal Medication And Modern Remedies Sociology Essay

This task is to do a comparison of Chinese herbal medicine with contemporary (Western) medicine regarding culture, sociological and individual well-being effects. An over the internet system has been intended to showcase numerous popular Chinese herbals to be able to gain better understanding along the way these herbs keep body balance and harmony. The system also help people to check the translation of Chinese herbal products Also the users can comment on the internet site,and exchange their tips with others.

Also, some sociological and philosophical reasons that can affect people’s views are discussed in the study section of this report.

1. Introduction

1.1 Project background

The background of the project could be thought asthe points displayed below.

At any moment, healthy is a significant factor for a human well being. Especially at present, many people are thinking more about their wellness while working and living beneath the pressure of economic recession. Research has shown that a lot of people choose modern medicine, my spouse and i.e., western remedies to cure diseases. However, not only modern treatments costs an excessive amount of but also it has side defects. In ’09 2009, following the American singer Michael Jackson passed away, many persons have realized that acquiring more medicines can get sometimes unpleasant side effect, and often, fatal. Furthermore, as a result of the pandemic of Swine Flu, persons have began to think more about disease prevention than simply curing them. To the end, Chinese herbal medicine can help and has since become more popular than before, that is a very natural choice. Consequently, more and more people are interest in Chinese Herbal Treatments (CHM). According to Universe Hearth Organization (WHO) webpage, the following description has been given: “During its 3000-year record, traditional Chinese medicine pioneered interventions such as for example diet, exercise, awareness of environmental influences on overall health, and the use of herbal remedies as part of a holistic approach to health.”(1). Chinese Organic Medicine can be utilised as in evidence.However,, similar to any different remedies, CHM is complicated, also to Chinese people. To understand Chinese Herbal Medicine isn’t easy. So, something thatcan provide the information of Chinese organic medicine can help people who aren’t used to CHM in many ways.

1.2 Problem definition

From the questionnaire conducted in this job and shown in Appnediex, more than 80% non-Chinese people heard about Chinese Herbal Medicine,.Whereas , greater than a half of them prefer modern medicine. Hence, why donot they like Chinese medicine may be the first issue to ask.

Secondly, Based on the questionnaire, a lot more than 60% persons use Internet everyday, this means, with the development of e-commerce, Internet can be quite a tool that provides people with different sights on Chinese herbal drugs. But, during the research, until now, simply a few internet site can support this, which are




On the other hand, there are some concerns in these three internet sites.

Figure1: the first web site at


The web page A can be used to get some herbs on line,i.e., this can be a on-line shopping site.

There isn’t any information about the background of these herbs. From this web site, users only can purchase the herbs, but cannot learn the data of Chinese herbal drugs.

Figure 2: the second web site.

Similarly, website B can only just provide general info on CM, however, not information regarding each individual herb and its functions.

Figure3: the 3rd web site

On the other palm, webpage C provides amount of useful facts on CHM. However, again when it comes to each herb, the data is not there with several translation errors. In summary, although there are a few web sites that provide information on Chinese organic medicine, for people with little knowledge of CHM, a fresh web sited is needed to work as an educational tool along with an online shopping blog, which is usually what this job does.

1.3 Aims

The aim of this project is to create and build a website system that allows users with little understanding of CHM to understand and understand Chinese organic medicine. Another purpose is to start an online discussion discussion board to find the reasons behind that why so various people have no idea or dislike CHM.

1.4 Objectives

Gather information on the data of CHM based on questionnaires.

Interview with doctors who practice CHM.Perform research on these topics

Design and build an online system.

Evaluate the web website.

Write final report on project.

2 Literature review

This chapter will critique three books on Chinese medicine, which include ‘Chinese herbal drugs -A practical information to the healing electric power of herbal remedies’ by Guang Xu (Give reference in the end???), ‘Medicine East And West: Two Ways of seeing, two means of thinking’ by Ted J.kaptchuk (reference???), ‘Chinese organic medicine Formulas and Approaches’ by Dan Bensky and Randall Barolet (reference???) and ‘Chinese Organic Legends’ by Zhu Zhongbao (reference???).

2.1 The healing power of herbs

In the book written by Guang Xu, the author tries to give a general overview about Chinese herbal treatments. The related chapters can be split into two parts, one can be Chinese herbal medicine history, a different one is the elements of Chinese herbal medicine.

Chinese herbal medicine has a long history of more than 5000 years. The history can get back to enough time of Sheng Nong, when Chinese people used plants to treat the illness beyond a few thousand years.

As explained by the author, Chinese herbal medicine is normally rooted in the lifestyle of centuries, it cannot be easily explained or measured by contemporary scientific language and methods. Without a total knowledge of its background and its history, it is very difficult to comprehend. [reference??] . Relating to Chinese Culture, fundamentally, there are two several elements that can affect Chinese Herbal Treatments. One is Yin (darkness) Yang (brightness), a different one is Five-Aspect Theory. By understanding both of these elements, it is easier for people who have no idea CHM to grasp Chinese Herbal Medicine.

2.1.1 Yin and Yang (darkness and lighting)

Yin Yang, which can be from classic Chinese philosophy, may be the brand of two related stuff that are reverse in the natural world, i.e., everything in the universe can contain two opposite, such as sunshine, fire, light, which are Yang. However, grey, dark, cold, belong to the aspect of Yin. In Chinese Remedies, Yin-Yang theory is an important element through the whole medicine system and may be employed to make clear your body system and guide the procedure. For example:

Yin-Yang means that everything on the planet has an opposite, such as for example sky and land, sunshine and moon. Although they are opposite, they also can be an unity. Through this unity, the natural world will keep the total amount well.

Yin-Yang depends on with one another, meaning when there is no Yang, there is no Yin. When the total amount of the partnership of the material of Yin-Yang will be destroyed, the life might reach its end.

On the other hands, Yin-Yang has a special relationship. If one wanes the various other will wax. For example, just as the four seasons, if winter alterations to spring, the elements should be warm. It’s the process of Yin waxes and Yang wanes.

Five-Element Theory

The Five-factor theory includes fire, metal, water, lumber and earth, in addition to their motions. The historical Chinese persons found these five factors are the basic substances in universe. These five types of elements have relationship of generation and restriction, as found in Chinese Herbal Medicine, Chinese doctors utilize them to describe the issues of disease as explained in the next:

Reinforcing the spleen (earth) to strengthen the lung (metal) ;

Failure of normal water (kidney) to nourish solid wood (or failure of the kidney to nourish the liver) ;

Five actions and six climates;

Wood tending to disseminate freely;

Depression of the liver (wood) making fire;

Fire of the liver (real wood) impairing the lung (metal);

Fire maintaining flare/flame upward ;

Excessive fire impairing the lung (metal) ;

Failure of fire to generate earth ;

Coordination between water (kidney) and fire (heart and soul);

In coordination between your kidney (drinking water) and the center (fire) ;

“Being restricted” and “restricting” ;

Philosophical concept

Traditional Chinese herbal treatments, however, can be based on two treatments which are on philosophical notion. The Holistic Concept

By this concept, there is a general meaning, i just.e., our body is normally a unity and a universe is at a body. Alternatively, it has a close conversation with the universe. Traditional Chinese Medicine maintains a human body is composed of several organs with each organ featuring its own distinct function, as a part of the whole body. Also, Chinese medication regards the complete body as an organic body. ‘Its constituent parts will be inseparable in framework, interrelated and interdependent in physiology’. Man has a nature life, and characteristics provides an environment for man’s survival. So, human could be affected naturally. Traditions Chinese Medicine states ‘Physicians need to know the law of dynamics and geographical circumstances when diagnosing and treating diseases’ . That is the reason of Tradition Chinese Treatments not only stresses the human body is a unity but as well regards the interrelationship between your body and dynamics environment. Treatment by Differentiation of Syndromes

Chinese herbal medicine, on the other hand, is also comprehended as treatment by differentiation of syndromes. The meaning of differentiation is to analyze the diseases by thorough, implying that the patient’s symptoms and signals collected by the following four diagnostic methods will be analyzed and summarized so that you can identify the etiology, characteristics and location of a disease, and the relationship between essential qi (air) and pathogens, thereby to determine what syndrome an illness in concern belongs to.

According to the partnership between “disease” and “treatment”, traditional Chinese medicine is based on two various ways. One is to take care of the same disease with distinct therapies. Whilst a different one is to treat different ailments with the same remedy, i.e., unique disease can

come to be manifested in the same scenario may be treated just as.

In summary, using unique methods for the treatment of the condition is the main of Treatment by Differentiation of Syndromes.

2.2 Chinese Treatments and Western Medicine

The e book by Ted J.kaptchuk discusses the difference between East and West drugs, such as for example why some westerners dislike Chinese Medication? There exists a philosophic reason, which is definitely that Chinese way of life is hard to comprehend. But, another purpose is sociological. This is the way of western people thinking about Chinese Medication. In this book, author gives two different views on seeing and considering via westerner’s look at, If a non-Chinese person can discovered these two techniques, he/she might become interested in Chinese Medicine.

The first one is concerned with treatment result. Many non-chinese have odd notions about Chinese medicine, Some of them see it as hocus-pocus-the item of primitive or magical thinking. If an individual is cured through herbs or acupuncture, they find only two feasible explanations: Either the stop is a placebo impact, or it is an accident.

To many people, if they heard about CHM, the first sense in their head is that, Chinese treatments is magical, but not science. The reason can be understood that Western drugs is based on data. Western doctors prefer employing data to treat disease, whereas Chinese doctors happen to be and only their experience.

Another way of thinking, as defined in the reserve, is “Different Westerners have a far more favorable but equally erroneous look at of Chinese medication. Deeply and often justifiably disturbed by many of the products of Western science and culture, they presume that the Chinese system, because it is felt to become more ancient, more spiritual, or more holistic, is also more “true” than Western medicine.”

In this way, some Westerners like Chinese medicine, but, as a result of different background, different lifestyle, different record, their translate Chinese remedies of their own way predicated on their own culture. As well, they learn Chinese remedies through TV, Internet and some other media. Within their mind, that’s what Chinese remedies should look like.

By and large, there are two groups of people. One group make use of Chinese medicine, but, feel that Chinese medicine is less logical and isn’t predicated on science. It will depend on a patient’s fortune. Another group of men and women think Chinese medicine through their own culture. Their minds tend to be mixed by this lifestyle and other media. Hence, in their brain, they have a distinct image of Chinese herbal medicine. But, often, this picture is incomplete.

In Overview, the sociological motive that why westerners dislike Chinese treatments is based on a complete system. The Chinese method is dependant on the idea that no single part can be comprehended except in its relation to the whole. Understanding this overall design, with the symptom within it, may be the challenge of Chinese medication. The Chinese system is not less logical, just less analytical.

2.3 Formulas and Strategies

The publication on Formulas and Strategies by Dan Bensky and Randall Barolet has divided Chinese herbal medicine as Chinese natural and Chinese remedies. Whereas the publication by Zhu Zhongbao on Chinese Herbal Legends’ focuses on the application of herbs.

Recently, a lot more Chinese doctors determined it hard to translate Chinese organic names. Because, the natural name is founded on Chinese culture and history, and there are thus many acceptable solutions. Since these books work as a reference text message, for our job, our details is to reflect as closely as possible this is and syntax of the original CHM. We employ anglicized Latin titles for medicinal substances. The right translations of herbal can be found from both of these books.

The following examples are given in the webpage designed in this project.

1) Cang zhu


English brand: Swordlike Atractylodes Rhizome

Pharmaceutical name :Rhizoma Atractylodis

Nature and taste: Pungent, bitter and warm


Dries dampness and strengthens the spleen

Dispels wind dampness

Induces sweat, releases the exterior


Syndrome of dampness stagnation in Middle Burner

Impediment syndrome because of wind damp

Exterior syndrome of wind , cold and dampness

Chickenpox, mumps and scarlet fever

Infantile rickets

Night blindness and dried out eyes


2) Jin Yin Hua


English name: Honeysuckle Flower

Pharmaceutical name: Flos Lonicerae Japonicae.

Nature and flavor:Nice and cold


Clears apart heat and resolve toxin

Disperses wind and heat


External contracted wind-high temperature, the onset of warm disease

Carbuncle and clove sores

Bleeding because of heat toxin

More information about translation will get by chapter 3″result and disscuess”.


Based on the study of literature analysis, two methods have already been applied in the development of this task. One is to execute questionnaire to assemble information from the point of viewpoint of Chinese doctors. The different is to create and develop an online website providing educational tool on the reason of what each herb does and a prototype of potential online buying site to deliver the herbs that persons require.

3.1 Interview with a Chinese doctor

Location: Brent Cross Doctor Herb

Student Name: Yuanlei Wang

Following the suggestion by the supervisor, Dr. Amaldi, this interview took place at Brent Cross Doctor Herb to be able to gain insight useful info from a professional CHM practitioner. The Chinese doctor of the clinic explained the changing of Chinese natural medicine over the last 10 years. After recording, translating, and analysis, the main points could be summarized as follows.

As reviewed in Section 2, there are two significant reasons that Chinese herbal treatments is not as favorite as Western drugs. They happen to be sociological and tradition.


In the past, because Chinese government had ‘closed door’ insurance plan, Chinese were hardly known to the other world. Nor was Chinese Plant based Medicine, which has led less persons being curiosity in China culture, history, and Chinese herbal treatments. Moreover, Chinese federal government imposed a ‘culture revolution’ and ignored CHM, resulting in less and less persons know this medicine, possibly in China.


In Europe, every medical practice demands license to make sure patients’ safety, which can only obtained by field trial through gathering large amount of data. As mentioned in Section 2, CHM is principally predicated on experience. Therefore CHM can’t be found in many hospitals, but can be utilised as additional therapy, such as acupuncture. Because the differences in culture, it really is hard for non-Chinese people to understand this invasive technique,

On the other side, the united kingdom National Health Support (NHS) has just introduced limited CHM. Various GPs (general practitioner) think Chinese herbal remedies is an accident not a technology. Because NHS is free to the united kingdom people, whereas CHM are expensive, people will think before visit a CHM shop.

Chinese herbal treatments (CHM) in the UK

Since China started out an ‘open’ policy three years ago, a growing number of people have visited China and are becoming more and more considering Chinese culture and for that reason CHM.

Now, in the united kingdom, there are over 3000 Chinese medicine shops from coast to coast, an increase by over 30% in the least 30 years. A lot more people have started to take Chinese herbal remedies. Furthermore, the UK government has a plan to legitimate Chinese herbal remedies within NHS. So, CHM is getting a growing number of recognized in increasing people’s very well being and healthy existence.

(More info will be given in result and discussion )

3.1.4 Media Effect

British Broadcasting Cooperation (BBC) in addition has made huge contribution to expose CHM to the UK. For example, in January 2006, BBC Channel 2 do a program on Acupuncture Deactivates Mind and once again on Back-discomfort Acupuncture Effective in Septmeber.

In these programmes, doctors try to utilize the acupuncture instead the overall anaesthetic. Through the first programme, it is said: “The discomfort matrix is mixed up in perception of pain – it helps someone decide whether something can be painful or not, so that it could be that acupuncture in some ways changes someone’s pain perception”. But he added: “Finished . about acupuncture is that it does not work on everyone. It is more likely to be effective if you believe it.”I believe it is a psychological manipulation technique, a distraction. We will not get to the stage where this could be used instead of a general anaesthetic.”

In the second programme, the message is that acupuncture for low rear pain is cost-effective and works, according to medical scientists.

According to the interview through the questionnaire time, the physician remembered that after this TV programme, many people discovered that Chinese herbal medicine are of help for their body. More and more people have visited Chinese drugs shop.

This example has shown that media provides a sensible way to spread a news. Additional means of media should also be employed in this regard.

Design and Build an online Herbal Shop

Although Television is a extremely useful way to broadcast a media, it gets the limitation of time. Like the two programmes discussed in Section 3.1.4, they were displayed near mid-night when a lot of people have died to bed and skipped many viewers. Internet, nevertheless, is 24-7 and may be viewed whenever, any location by using any means (e.g, mobile phone, computer, TV, etc). Consequently in this job, an online system has been intended to introduce Chinese herbal products plus their relevant facts. The web page reaches

Figure 1 display a use-case UML (Unified Modelling Words) diagram showing the design.

Figure 1. A UML diagram showing the made Chinese Herb webpage (

The system interface is contains three main parts, including product viewing page, internet search engine, input page, and guest book to mail users’ feedbacks, and provides client-server structure. In the server, the data source is made using MySQL words, a rational database language. While the web user interface is constructed applying PHP (Personal Home Page) language, a c-like words.

When users utilize this product, the process serves as a follows.

Figure 2. System composition.

When users enter data through net interfaces which will be coded in PHP. Then your interface through PHP transmits/retrieves data to/from MYSQL database

that is resided at the web page server at .

3.2.1 Capabilities of the system

This system has three parts, incorporating Guest reserve, information, and background, which are explain in review.


About Chinese herbal medicine

Chinese herbals

Guest book

The background of Chinese herbal medication.

The first function is the information of Chinese organic medicine., in this web page, users can know the history of Chinese herbal remedies, and other information.

Guest book

The second function is Guest reserve, in this function, the users can produce some terms in the browser. This part just provides a environment for exchanging strategies.

Chinese herbal

The previous function is Chinese plant based to introduce its function, flavor, condition, and much more.

4 Result and Discussion

This Section will go over the results acquired from the interviewing with a Chinese drugs doctor and the developed prototype online CHM store and information system.

4.1 Benefits from the interviewing

Through the questionnaire and the interview with the Chinese doctor at Brent Corss Clinic, it can be concluded that practically half of the populace don’t like to have no idea CHM, as illustrated at Figure 6. A considerable number of people have not heard of CHM. And a quarter of people have no idea the places to acquire CHM. Many people do even just like the tastes of CHM, which is similar to many Chinese people who take herbs.

Figure 3. Pie chart showing the group of folks thinking of CHM.

These differences again could be associated to the issues of 1 1) Lifestyle 2) Translation.3) Mass media 4) Government 5) The tastes of Natural. In these data, tradition belongs to philosophic purpose, whilst media, translation, authorities and the tastes of herbal relate to sociological reason.


Chinese Medicine has pursuing characteristics.

Preventing is more significant than treatment

According to Chinese drugs book “Yellow Emperor”, people should handle disease before they own it, i.e., people should take care of their body before they have illness. Another reserve “Hua inan zi (Chinese medicine)” also claims that a good doctor typically treats non-diseases, hence there is no disease. We.e., if a doctor can discover a person’s disease before this person get it, he will never understand this disease. This prevention-oriented medical idea that people should look after their health from an early age, can convert as a way of measuring dialectical philosophy, which is the essence of Chinese way of life.

Nature and Man should be together

The overall idea of Chinese philosophy targets that human being and nature world should be together, such as a body. That the world and the human aren’t isolated, plus they are interdependent, interacting, and interrelated. In terms of Chinese Herbal Medicine, it also has the same pinciple.

Chinese herbal medicine advocates astronomy, geography, and individuals should be a complete entity. A nature human being cannot leave the interpersonal world to survive. The factors that influence health and disease, are worried with not merely biological factors, but also social and emotional factors, So, Chinese Organic Medicine also advocates treatment which should give attention to the change of mother nature world.

To adjust the balance of Yin-Yang (YY)

Chinese Remedies mentions that the Yin-Yang is definitely two sided, which is usually relatively representative of the body. The formation and progress is usually inseparable from the advancement of YY. In the body’s normal physiological circumstances, the relative equilibrium of YY is maintained, which is significant. If one is modified, the mis-balance will cause the modification/disorder of body’s common physiological function. All of the actions that a human is doing in the nature universe are inseparable from the balance of YY. Therefore, the objective of the coordination demonstrates traditional Chinese culture concentrate on symmetry, the bedrock philosophy of the balance.

Static and dynamic idea of the constant combining

From the first age, Chinese Philosophy already found the relationship between static and dynamic understanding , as stated in the Publication of Modification (Zhou Yi). The static and dynamic stuff are happening continuously. The substance in the type world should excersice and changing. In the complete human life, everything within the body, should keep changing before end. Motion may be the rule of nature world. It is the basic aspect of human health. Hence, Chinese Drugs stresses dynamics that can treat disease. Simply just as the same way that people know that sporting is good for health. Alternatively, comparing with dynamic watch, Chinese Herbal Medicine likewise found that silence can even be a healthy behavior. “Qi Gong” (i.e., marshal art) is founded on this opinion. Consequently, Static and dynamic element ought to be completed.


A good translation can help people with different culture background understand Chinese Herbal Medicine (CHM) better. Because CHM possesses its own culture and history , oftentimes, it really response paper is difficult to translate what exactly, which can trigger frustration and lead extra people lose their interest in CHM, which is definitely explained below.

The philosophic meaning in the medicine name. Some CHM brands are based on their individual philosophic meaning, such as Yin Yang, Yuan Qi etc. If people have no idea Chinese philosophic culture, it might be hard to translate.

For some CHM doctors, if they translate medicine names, they occasionally copy some western remedies names. Whereas essentially those medicines are completely different.

Because of the long record of China, Chinese Organic Medicine is founded on a vintage knowledge system. Through more than thousand years, some of them have already lost their meanings with just a few persons understanding. So, even to some how to write a synthesis essay knowledgeable Chinese people, translating medicine names is a hard job.

Other factors include Press. According to data evaluation from the questionaire, press is a very important means in order to let more people know Chinese medicine. Nevertheless media can be limited, including the ‘wrong period’ of a TV program leading to many people missing the show.

Another point is Governmental: Before, Chinese Government possessed a ‘closed door’ policy, which includes limited understanding of CHM.

The questionnaire in addition has concluded that bad taste of herbal remedies could also have some effect to prevent people taking them.

Online shopping system

Figures 3-6 illustrate the snapshots of web interfaces of the developed prototype online information and shopping system.

Figure 4. The interface showing the Herb information.

Figure 5. Input user interface.

Figure 6. Internet search engine.

Figure 7. Guest e book for sending users’ feedbacks.

The system right now contains more than 20 herbs information.

System Evaluation

The evaluation of the developed web site is founded on heuristic evaluation. That may give a general overview of the web page, also, through in this manner, it can provide a good idea for developers to increase the system design.

The reason for this analysis is that, users include a task to browse the complete web pages. This should start on the home page and end when users get the feedback. Through this way, users can have an over-all view of the machine by following a rules shown below.

User control and freedom

Users control and flexibility can be understood that system can assist users undo or do. Through the task we choose, users will get that it is challenging to allow them to control the web sites. ie, in the comment site, when users submit the words, they’ll find that there exists a button for them to resubmit.

Fun and enjoyment

According the purpose of this web site, the web site should give the info of the Chinese organic remedies to users. That implies that the web pages ought to be fun, but these web pages are very plain, i.e., 1) All of the background colours are light. 2) The internet site is too simply , There is absolutely no enjoyment for users.


Feedback is important for users to understand the information of the web page. In this internet site, users can comment and start to see the other feedbacks.

Provide short cuts

Short cuts are often for users to find what they need. In general, the web site is useful. Users can find the information regarding Chinese herbal medication that need from the home page.

Aesthetics and minimalist design

Normally, users can have got a good feeling with an excellent minimalist design. But, this website is boring at this stage. Through all web pages, there is absolutely no colour, no pictures, all of the buttons are closed with each other. That may be caused some problems of users.

On the other palm, there are some positive feedbacks. The users will get buttons easily, especially on the last web page, where there is a comment page, providing a good interaction between users and the web site.

In summary, this internet site is fine, users will get some general information regarding Chinese herbal medicine from this web site, also, this web site has a guest webpage. Users can have an excellent interaction with the system.

According heuristic evaluation, there are several negative aspects. Such as for example, 1)This system is quite simply . 2) The colors aren’t very good. 3) It really is boring for users 4) Some steps aren’t useful.

All in all, this web site can provide users a general judgment of Chinese herbal remedies.


There are some elements which have to recommend.

It should change colours of the web pages.

The system should not be simple.

The web site should increase some enjoyment.

It should provide the search function for users.

The web pages should give more flexibility to users.


This project aims at introducing persons Chinese Herbal Drugs and is rolling out an online program providing data on Chinese herbs. The design of the machine applies client-server structure and employs MySQL and PHP programming languages. The system also has a guest reserve providing users the probabilities to give feed backs.

The study conducted in this task utilizing a questionnaire has made the following recommendations as a way to let more people know more about Chinese medicine.

Using some short testimonies to tell people Chinese culture.

Using many media in addition to Television set to spread the news headlines on Chinese herbal medicine.

Making translations more robust.

Adding some flavors to change the tastes of some ‘bad preference’ herbs.

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