Signs of vitamin and mineral deficiency are noted. These are given in tablet form, in natural preparations which the body can absorb easily without strain. Foods containing these missing factors are suggested to be included in the diet. Often an essential item is missing – a common one is unsaturated fatty acids. Often the diet is very high in acid forming foods (meat, dairy products, eggs, fish, grains) and low in alkaline forming foods (fresh raw fruit and vegetables) causing excessive waste build-up in the tissues. Even though adequate cell function can be restored by altering the diet, wastes must be cleared and organs (and often the whole body) revitalized. Often foods are not of sufficient energy content to do this and herbal remedies then find their usage.
There is a wide range of herbs available (apart from the well-known culinary varieties) which have a highly successful usage in naturopathic practice. Each, because of its specific quality, can supply vital energy in a highly concentrated form to specific organs, so enabling them to regain their normal functions in a far shorter time than would be possible from dietary therapy alone. Little is known of how herbs work. On analysis, they are found to have high concentrations of vitamins and minerals, each herb having of course a different combination of active substances. In addition, highly complex organic molecules of unknown action are consistently found. They undoubtedly contribute to the action of the herb, perhaps in a major fashion. Except for a few notable exceptions, such as foxglove or digitalis, the medicinal usage of herbs has been largely uninvestigated. This is a great pity, for their usefulness has been well established for centuries.