Why a Publication Company?

The original eclectic physicians were pioneers of American botanical research. Their motto, “sustain the vital forces,” encapsulated their goal: support the body’s balance and function, and aid its return to health.

Their medicine was about as far from one-size-fits all as you could get. They prescribed specifically for each individual patient, not simply according to the general disease condition. Furthermore, their medical schools, private clinical practices and pharmacies were founded on empirical, scientific methods, and they were innovative.

The Day America Stopped Studying Its Plants

By 1940, due to medical politics and pressures, this flowering of botanical study had declined to the point that even the Eclectic Medical College of Cincinnati – once America’s preeminent medical institution – graduated its last class, and closed its doors.

Over the next thirty years, our physicians did very little with botanicals, beyond isolating phytochemicals for drug development. The real botanical research had moved to Europe. Especially in Germany, doctors devoted themselves to our own indigenous plants: echinacea, saw palmetto, black cohosh and other species.

Case in point: Herbal Medicine by Rudolph Weiss was the most important clinical botanical text of its time, published in 1960 in German, not translated into English till 1988.

Bringing Serious Botanical Study Back To Life

When the Eclectic Institute was founded in 1983, part of our vision was to breathe new life into serious botanical study. We wanted to revive what the original eclectics had begun, then build on that foundation with modern methods and products, developed coherently from the roots of the eclectic tradition.

Keeping the Classics in Circulation

First off, we wanted to make sure the great botanical reference texts of the early 1900s would remain available:

Earlier classics as well:

We also worked together to compile long-neglected clinical material on botanicals:

Breaking New Ground

Since 1989, we’ve also been publishing original titles by naturopathic physicians Francis Brinker, Wade Boyle and others, complementing and updating the historical data with modern research.

Under the direction of our founder, Dr. Ed Alstat, Eclectic Medical Publications has expanded independent botanical research into the present day, while keeping the treasures of the past alive.