Active ingredients in plants and herbs

Plants and herbs have been used therapeutically for thousands of years. Sometimes people use plants and herbs in their crude form, for example by smoking or vaporizing them. In addition to that, extracts of plants and herbs are made, often with oil products as a result, that are usually ingested orally. Constituents of plants and herbs can also be synthesized (recreated in a laboratory) to produce medication. In short, the use of plants and herbs for therapeutic purposes is not something that was only done in the past or only in certain subcultures. Furthermore, there is now much more scientific literature available that supports the therapeutic uses of plants and herbs than there used to be.

 

Active ingredients and science

The complexity of some plants and herbs make them difficult objects to study scientifically. Researchers would like to attribute the effectiveness of a (future) drug to one or two active ingredients. When plants and herbs are studied as a whole, this is often impossible, because they contain hundreds of active ingredients. Furthermore, to make things even more complex, these ingredients appear to influence each others activity and effects, often in both directions. Thus, scientists usually choose to investigate the effect of a single ingredient per study, or at most a combination of two ingredients. On the other side, people who have experience with the therapeutic use of these products often think that whole plant extracts (ie, containing a whole range of active ingredients) work better than a single isolated substance. In practice, this means that science can give us indications about which ingredients are effective, but at the same time that consumers themselves have to find their own ideal composition.

 

The ideal composition

The most effective composition of a plant, extract or oil is dependent on several factors. Of course there are individual differences, but also the condition for which a product is used is an important factor. Getting in touch with other consumers can provide much information, but ultimately it is also a matter of experimenting until you find a composition that is effective for you.

 

What can New Agro Research do for you?

We want to help our customers by providing them with essential and much needed information. When you found yourself a plant, herb (or extract theroff) that gives you the desired effect, it can be very helpful to know what the composition of this strain or oil is, for example for future use. But also when you already know what composition you need and you want to check whether your product qualifies, we can be of great help. Finally, the outcome of our testing may give incentive to alter the compostion of your product by diluting it or mixing it with other products.