Dr. Isaac Ayodele, a naturopathic medicine practitioner and public health expert, highlights the use of herbal medicine in addressing several medical conditions in this interview with APPOLONIA ADEYEMI and FLORA ONWUDIWE
Using herbal medicine, how do you address the problem of a man with libido?
Libido is not a male affair alone. It is a problem for both men and women. Weak libido is a disease but, it is a symptom of a disease that may be more devastating which needs to be investigated. There are some hormones which we should have naturally, but people have more of these hormones when they were younger, but as they grow older they discover that they don’t have enough of it anymore.
In fact, that is why older people cannot make love as actively as the younger people. So, what we simply do is to try and correct that by giving necessary health products that can resolve that hormonal problem both for male and female. Just as it happens to some males who experience poor sex drive, some females, too don’t have interest in sex.
Can traditional herbal medicine effectively treat fibroids like orthodox medicine?
These things are only like cutting the problems from the head. In handling the issue of fibroids, when you go and do surgery, the first thing I tell my clients is to run away from surgery. Why? This is because they are cutting the tree; they are not solving the problem from the root. Consequently, the fibroids are bound to grow again.
Besides, in the course of the surgery, so many things can get wrong in the womb and if they want to have children later, they won’t be able to have it anymore. However, with natural remedies a lot can be done. When you use something to make love for five minutes or one hour or one day it is not a solution.
We have to address the issue from the roots; it may be the food you eat or the food you don’t eat or what you drink that may be behind the problem. For instance, when you consume alcohol or smoke cigarettes, how do you expect your health to be in top shape? So, beyond that we now come up with natural products, that you have to use to get back alive and when you do that , you discover you will naturally be alright. Again, natural medicine does not work like an emergency kind of medicine. For instance, if you have a headache, the headache you have is not a disease. The headache is an alarm that there is something wrong with your system, but there is a medicine you can get from the pharmacy to stop the headache. You are stopping the alarm but the problem is not resolved from the root.
What are the challenges you‘ve had in promoting herbal medicine?
Finance is a very big one and I don’t believe in borrowing. We have not come into terms with ourselves in Nigeria and it is a very painful experience. We talk so much about diversification, but we are not ready to diversify. There are big things we can do with diversification of natural medicine. All these plants are medicines and they do a lot.
Where do you source your herbs from?
We have Ayodele Herbal Farm where we plant a lot of herbs and we source more than 90 per cent of herbs from the farm. We also know that there are lots of traditional herbs here and they work. We have clinical trials of these herbs to determine their efficacy. We don’t just distribute the herbs or package the herbs. We try to do clinical trials and it has been very excellent.
Yes, I know that there are some herbs with Chinese origins, India or other places. Again, it is about new colonialism, there is a new trend of colonialism believing if something does not come from abroad, it is not good. We should not underrate what we have here. If we move round we will discover that there are lots of ways we can get rid of so many of our ailments . From my local experience, I am the fourth generation of herbal medicine practitioner in my maternal family now.
Can all ailments be treated with natural herbs?
Yes, there is a medicine talk about let food be your medicine and let your medicine be your food. There is no disease that cannot be cured with natural medicine. Go to the graveyard of the people that have died, it is possible that what is growing there is what they would have been used to. Because they underrated it, God has given to us what to use to be alive.
Don’t forget that the original medicine is herbal medicine. Let us use it. Medical doctors should not castigate herbal medicines by saying they don’t work. I agree with them that it was not taught in school, but let us try it, ordinary water can do a lot.
On fertility drugs On the issue of infertility, we believe that there must be reason for infertility. A person experiencing infertility may have Fibroids, Ovarian Cyst, hormonal problem or infections. However, we go through the usual laboratory test and tell our clients to come along with the result of the lab test.
Is traditional medicine the same thing as alternative medicine?
It is traditional medicine in Nigeria but when we take it outside Nigeria, it becomes alternative medicine. The Chinese medicine that we bring to Nigeria as Chinese medicine is alternative medicine. The Acupuncture and all the rest are alternative medicines. If China is magnanimous enough to import our own medicine to their own country, it becomes alternative.
So, traditional medicine is all encompassing: it is about the folklores of the people, the custom of the people , which is also related to the history and all the things put together because some of these medicines may be psychological and when they are practicing their psychological effect you will be thinking that they are doing ‘juju’. It is not in all cases that they are doing ‘juju’. Juju is a spiritual belief system incorporating objects, such as amulets, and spells used in traditional religious practice, as part of witchcraft in West Africa.
How affordable are your product?
We have a philosophy in Ayodele Herbals, we believe in taking from the rich and giving to the poor. That is our secret for our non-governmental organisation (NGO) and our DIAFA NGO activities. Usually every two months, we have free medical treatment and free medical checkup. We invite the poor to come there we don’t collect money from them.
We test them and when we discovered their ailments, we also treat them. Our products are meant to be class products to reach out to the high and the mighty. That is the bane of our problem. When we started, the elites were running away from the products. So, we had to make something that was acceptable to them and it costs us a lot. Even our packaging alone, was outstanding.
Metro and Crime21 hours ago
Fear of fresh explosion grips Aba residents
Metro and Crime13 hours ago
PHOTO: Police arrests four cultists, six robbery suspects in Benue
National news13 hours ago
Primaries: NWC report indicts Ogun APC exco for fraud
Metro and Crime15 hours ago
10 men docked for allegedly belonging to a secret cult in Ogun
News Around Nigeria13 hours ago
Ekiti debt not N170bn, Fayemi preparing grounds for impending failure – Fayose
News13 hours ago
2 policemen, civilian killed, 5 others injured in Kaduna
National news13 hours ago
We didn’t ask you to commit exam malpractices, APC replies Adeleke
News13 hours ago
Group organises political leadership training for Women