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What is TCM?

Updated: 2013-02-20 07:48
By Liu Jie ( China Daily)

The origins of traditional Chinese medicine can be traced to Shen Nong Shi, a mythological figure from about 5,000 years ago, who sampled hundreds of herbs for use as medicines. The formal history of TCM starts about 2,500 years ago with the Yellow Emperor's Inner Classic, the first written account of its practice.

TCM views a patient's condition as a reflection of the interaction of five elements of nature: wood, fire, earth, metal and water. The goal is to treat each patient holistically, with prescriptions tailored to the individual patient's condition.

Chinese consumers generally perceive TCM as more effective for disease and chronic illness prevention, and they view Western medicine as being more effective for acute and serious illnesses.

What is TCM?