The main difference between Western pharmaceutical drugs and Ayurvedic herbal supplements is how the health problem is addressed. Western pharmaceutical drugs generally address the symptoms of the problem, not what is causing it.
An example is having trouble sleeping. Many pharmaceutical prescription drugs for sleeping problems basically try to “knock out” the person taking them. These products create a “hangover” effect on a person’s mental and physical functioning the following day. Also people taking sleeping pills sometimes have a temporary worsening of the sleeping problem when they stop taking the pills. These pharmaceutical products are also usually not recommended to be taken on a long-term basis. Advertisements describing the benefits of these drugs are always followed by a long list of ailments, side effects, and complications that the drugs may cause, many of which are much worse than the insomnia itself.
Ayurvedic herbs are different from pharmaceutical products because they attempt to address the cause of the problem, rather than just the symptoms. Also, true Ayurvedic formulations are completely natural, as they are only formulated from the roots, leaves, and seeds of plants.