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Alka Sharma and Ashwani Kumar*


The nature has provided a complete storehouse of remedies to cure ailments of mankind. About 80 per cent of the world's population depends partially or wholly on traditional medicine for its primary health care needs. Herbal medicines as the major remedy in traditional medical system have been used in medical practice for thousands of years and have made a great contribution to maintain human health. The global interest in study and practice of crude drugs has therefore, considerably increased during the last two decades because of growing awareness about the toxicity and side effects of synthetic drugs, their limitations in many areas of therapy, comparatively high cost and often drug beyond the reach of common man. Worldwide interest on herbal medicine has gained momentum therefore, the standardization of herbal drugs is the most desirable at this time. Globally, a large population utilizes traditional medicines. Therefore, herbal medicines are rapidly increasing in economic importance. Thus pharmacognosy appears to be of great value in identification of commercial samples of the market to find their authenticity and establishing identity of adulterant or substituent. Besides lack of standardization, unscrupulous commercial practice of adulterating and substituting the genuine herbal drugs are posing great hurdle in popularizing the time-tested herbal-based traditional medicines. The number of medicinal formulations developed by Vaidyas has a positive correlation with number of diseases to be tested and Justicia adhatoda is used in treating diverse ailments.

Keywords: crude drugs, traditional medicine, herbal medicine.

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