TCM is characterized by several specific practices like acupuncture, moxibustion, meditation, exercise, pharmaceutical massages, food therapies, qi gong, Chinese Herbal Medicine. With at least 500 listed drugs and more than 100.000 recorded medicinal recipes in the ancient literature, Chinese Herbal Medicine deeply disciplines the use of plant, animal, and mineral products, which are combined between them and distributed through creams, herbal teas, powders, syrups, pills.
Is TCM effective? It depends, obviously, from several factors and aspects. It is a fact that TCM is the primary health care system for hundred of millions of people in mainland China. Chinese Herbal Medicine’s effectiveness is scarcely documented following Western standards, and in many cases there is a lack of a scientific validation path generally recognized by the international scientific community, proving validity and efficiency of products, with documented data and generally accepted results. This photo essays has been made in Yunnan, South-West China. 75 traditional medicine products found in traditional pharmacies, clinics and markets have been shooted. Lately those pictures were printed and showed to healers, health operators, vendors, patients, to check what they were used for. The goal of the project was to interact with these professionals through images, writings and words, in order to complete a sort of catalogue obviously without any specific scientific validation about an extremely serious and complex argument as the TCM is.