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FACT: Of the 60,000+ plant species in the Amazon rainforest, less than 3% have been studied by modern medicine. Some, including Dr. Mark Plotkin (a top Harvard ethnobotanist working in the Amazon) have placed the figure lower, at 1.5%.
So imagine how many more healing plants are out there, known only to remote tribes who have been using them for hundreds or even thousands of years…..
It’s a race against time: With every acre of Amazon rainforest that is clear-felled, we are actually diminishing our chances of finding cures for our most serious diseases.
A few dedicated people are battling against massive opponents to seek out and protect the ancient knowledge of the Amazon rainforest herbs and to bring it to us – before it is destroyed forever. Check out the free trailer for the amazing documentary “Sacred Medicine” here (incredible stuff!)
Despite environmental campaigns, the Amazon rainforest still continues to shrink year by year. Most of what is cut down is replaced either by pasture for cattle or soya for animal feed.
5,800 km2 of rainforest in Brazil alone was destroyed in 2013 alone. But this figure does not include the deforestation happening in other countries! Brazil has 60% of the Amazon rainforest, followed by Peru (13%), Colobmia (10%), with the rest in Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, Guyana, Suriname and French Guiana.
One of the reasons the Amazon rainforest is so incredible is the biodiversity. One 2001 study found 1,100 tree species in just one quarter square kilometer (62 acres) of Ecuadorian rainforest! The total number of tree species in the Amazon has been estimated at 16,000. You could say that the Amazon is one of the most “alive” places on earth. So you can see why it makes sense that this is the place to look for “keys” to life and healing.
There are an astonishing number of unique phytochemicals (plant chemicals) in the Amazon plants that are not only unstudied, but completely undiscovered. All we know is that they are there, there are hundreds of thousands of them… and they are being destroyed. We also know that a significant number of our modern medicines have their basis in components that were extracted from herbs.
So its not just that we are harming nature by clear-cutting the rainforest. We are actually harming our own chances of survival in a very real way. The Amazon really is the world’s ultimate herbal medicine chest.
Traditional herbal healers may say that there is a plant that can cure every sickness. But the Amazon herbalists don’t write things down; it is a “living tradition” that is taught from elder to youth, mother to daughter, father to son. When these people die or are moved from their lands and go into a city lifestyle, their healing knowledge of these herbs is gone forever. If those tribes go, so does all their knowledge.
One intrepid team has taken sick people to the Amazon in search of healing through ancient methods. What happened is extraordinary. Click here to check out the free trailer for their amazing documentary “Sacred Medicine”.
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