According to the World Health Organisation, traditional medicine is the sum total of knowledge, skills and practices based on the theories, beliefs and experiences indigenous to different cultures that are used to maintain health, as well as to prevent, diagnose, improve or treat physical and mental illnesses.
In some Asian and African countries, 80 per cent of the population depends on traditional medicine for primary health care.
Herbal treatments are the most popular form of traditional medicine, with the largest revenue in the international marketplace.
Consumers should be cautious of counterfeit, poor quality, or altered herbal products that can be serious safety threats.
Traditional medicines and practices are capable of causing harm through undesired reactions if the product is poor quality, or is taken inappropriately.
Traditional medicines should not be used with or combined with other medicines.