Tea Dragon Films is First Adopter in the American Botanical Councils New Adopt-An-Herb Program

The American Botanical Council (ABC) has officially launched its Adopt-an-Herb program, following Tea Dragon Films ’ adoption of tea (Camellia sinensis). For the next three years, Tea Dragon Films will provide ABC financial support to ensure that abstracts (summaries) of the latest published scientific and clinical research on tea are made available within ABC’s HerbMedPro database, one of the most robust and powerful herbal databases and research tools on the Internet.

Tea Dragon Films’ adoption is in honor of its new film The Meaning of Tea, a 74-minute documentary that investigates the different beliefs, practices, and cultural traditions surrounding tea in eight countries: England, France, India, Ireland, Japan, Morocco, Taiwan, and the United States. Directed by Scott Chamberlin Hoyt, the film uses a mix of interviews, music and stunning visual elements to explore the fascinating world of tea. From tea rituals in cultures where tea is cherished, to those who mold the very instruments used to carry and serve tea, the film asks a variety of characters around the world about their relationship to tea as a beverage, a means of relaxation, and for many a way of life.

“ABC is deeply grateful to Scott Hoyt and Tea Dragon Films for being the very first to adopt an herb and providing such excellent support of the HerbMedPro database,” said Mark Blumenthal, ABC’s founder and executive director. “Their support furthers ABC’s efforts to expand HerbMedPro into an even more useful education and research tool.”

By adopting tea, Tea Dragon Films is supporting ABC’s ongoing efforts to collect and disseminate reliable traditional and science-based information on herbs, medicinal plants, and other plant-based ingredients. The Adopt-an-Herb program encourages companies and individuals to “adopt” one or more specific herbs within or for inclusion in the HerbMedPro database. Each adopted herb will be researched monthly for newly-published research and updated as needed. The result is that consumers, researchers, health practitioners, educators, media, government agencies, members of industry, journalists, and others can use HerbMedPro via ABC’s information-rich Web site to access the latest scientific and clinical publications on the adopted herbs.

HerbMedPro is now operated through a partnership between the Alternative Medicine Foundation and ABC. HerbMedPro is an interactive, impartial, and evidence-based herbal database that provides hyperlinked access to freely-available abstracts of scientific and clinical publications on 220 commonly used medicinal herbs. Herb records in HerbMedPro vary in size from those with a very large amount of published data, such as ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba), with over 1,000 summarized entries and links, to Acacia catechu (cutch tree or black catechu in the pea family, Fabaceae), with fewer than 50.

HerbMedPro has a free “sister” site, HerbMed, which features 20-30 herbs from HerbMedPro that are rotated onto this site on a regular basis. This site is available at no cost to the public, thereby increasing the number of people benefitting from updated information on adopted herbs. Tea is the “Herb of the Month” in December on the HerbMed Web site.

All adopters will be recognized by ABC for helping to promote ABC’s nonprofit educational mission and for helping to ensure that up-to-date herbal information on their adopted herb is readily accessible to the general public. This recognition will take place on ABC’s Web site, www.herbalgram.org, and in its publications, including ABC’s quarterly, peer-reviewed journal HerbalGram.

More information on the benefits of ABC’s Adopt-an-Herb program is available from Denise Meikel, ABC’s development director, in ABC’s development department or by calling 512-926-4900 x 120.

About Tea

Tea (Camellia sinensis) is probably the world’s second most popular beverage, next to water. The use of tea as a beverage and health aid goes back thousands of years in Asia, and it became a popular beverage in Europe after the 1500s. A growing body of scientific and clinical research continues to document the many health-related benefits of drinking various types of tea (green tea, black tea, oolong tea, etc.). Tea types vary based on the way the tea leaves are processed. A clinical monograph on tea, published in The ABC Clinical Guide to Herbs, ABC’s reference book accredited for continuing education for all major conventional health professions, can be accessed at: http://abc.herbalgram.org/site/PageServer?pagename=The_Guide.

About Tea Dragon Films

Tea Dragon Films was founded by producer-director Scott Chamberlin Hoyt in New York. Its film The Meaning of Tea, released in 2008, has been shown at various film festivals and industry and professional conferences. DVDs of the film can be purchased at the company’s Web site.

About the American Botanical Council

Founded in 1988 the American Botanical Council is a leading international nonprofit organization addressing research and educational issues regarding herbs and medicinal plants. ABC’s members include academic researchers and educators, universities and libraries, health professionals and medical institutions, botanical gardens and arboreta, government agencies, members of the herb, dietary supplement, cosmetic, and pharmaceutical industries, journalists, consumers, and other interested parties from over 70 countries. The organization occupies a historic 2.5-acre site in Austin, Texas where it publishes the quarterly journal HerbalGram, the monthly e-publication HerbalEGram, HerbClips (summaries of scientific and clinical publications), reference books, and other educational materials. ABC also hosts HerbMedPro, a powerful herbal database, covering scientific and clinical publications on 220 herbs. ABC is tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the IRS Code. Information: Contact ABC at P.O. Box 144345, Austin, TX 78714-4345, Phone: 512-926-4900. Website: http://www.herbalgram.org/

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