When technology began to isolate and standardize the primary constituent in a whole plant extract, we lost the balance of opposites that herbal medicine teaches us. And balance is what rules all life processes.
When you start messing with mother nature and pushing more in than what is supposed to be there, and also taking away other components it becomes toxic. Your body uses all the components of the plant to find balance.
For example, foxglove is far less toxic than its purified pharmaceutical component, digitalis.
One of the best-known examples of balance in an herb is dandelion. Many diuretics can deplete the body’s store of potassium. But dandelion contains both diuretic compounds and significant amounts of potassium, which creates a balancing effect in the body.
When we look around a field of wildflowers we can find plants that provide that balance of opposites. Some herbs sedate, while others stimulate. Some herbs are eliminative and cleansing, while others are building and toning.