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On drugs

Because so many things influence human health when encountered on a regular basis, Traditional Tibetan Medicine considers almost everything - animals, vegetables or minerals - as a potential medicine or source of harm. The physician's art is in knowing how to utilize whatever resources are available in a given situation, applying them at the right time and in the right circumstances.

Tibetan medical texts describe over 2,000 substances used to make medicines. In practice, the largest hospitals employ up to 800 and a doctor in a remote valley, sourcing and making his or her own medicines, may use around 100. Traditionally, the medical texts point to eight areas of resources, which may be effectively employed to treat ailments:  'precious' substances, such as gemstones, precious metals and rare articles (for Tibet)minerals derived from rocks, such as iron salts  minerals derived from soft rock and earths, such as sulphur, calcites, hot spring deposits etc.
aromatics and rare essences (for Tibet) such as nutmeg, clove, cardamon or rare animal extracts such as bezoar or musk. Salts are also included in this category, be they saline salts, water or earth-sourced, or the likes of Glaubers salt etc.

tree-sourced materials; a varied category including woods, such as sandalwood, eaglewood etc. but also tree fruits and nuts, such as the famous arura plum, as well as peppercorns, amber etc.

perennials and sturdier plants

herbs, annuals and smaller plants    
animal products  

The above ingredients are rarely used in isolation. They are usually combined with each other in order to counter any secondary effects and also in order not only to deal with specific symptoms and ailments but also to bring the whole system back to balance. It is very common for 5, 8, 10, 15, 20, 30 or even more of these substances to be carefully combined in order to respond to a specific patient's condition. The resulting compounds bear the name of the main ingredient + the number in total of ingredients, e.g. Eaglewood 20, Saffron 13 or Pearl 70.

The three main principles underlying the compounding of Tibetan Medicines are:

A medicine should not only calm the disease, but should also be able to restore the body at the same time.  

It is not enough to aim at just calming the disease, but one must also make sure that the medicine does not have any harmful side effect.  

Once an illness is calmed by a medicine, the medicine should be such that it prevents the illness from recurring.

These principles underlie the whole art of making medicines.

All medicines are to be made according to the formulae mentioned in the traditional texts, which describe precisely which part of the plant is to be used, when these plants are to be collected, how they should be dried, prepared and compounded and the exact proportions of each ingredient. Compounded medicines are to be kept in a special place and treated with care and respect.

Our Tibetan Medicine Center offers both medicines for general improvement of the health condition and medicines for treatment of serious diseases. Components of such kinds of medicines being chosen individually for each patient, according to ones particular condition.

How to find us

National Center for Tibetan Medicine in Beijing


No.218 XiaoGuanBeiLi, ChaoYang District, Beijing, China.


+86  13910515008
+86  18211161179



Skype: tibet-centr