Medical Herbalists use whole plant extracts to treat health problems in a holistic way – seeking out the underlying cause of a disease or imbalance and treating this rather than just the symptoms. The origins of western herbal medicine began in ancient Greece and this has been built upon through the centuries to become the blend of historical knowledge and latest scientific research that herbal medicine is today.
Particular attention is paid to the role that diet plays in our health, as this is fundamental to good health. Attending to diet also enhances and complements the action of herbs that are prescribed. Many herbs form part of our diets – oats, turmeric, bilberries, ginger, cinnamon, watercress and nettles are just a few examples. We have evolved and adapted to consume plants over millennia and easily assimilate their nourishing qualities. I encourage people to make achievable changes to diet so that they become enjoyable rather than seen as an arduous task. I also offer a practical help with cooking skills and food choices for those who would like more help in this regard – see my website page Healthy Meals – Kitchen coach.
Quality of sleep, appropriate levels of exercise and relaxation are also extremely important issues which contribute to good health. I have many years of experience in supporting the clients on the road to better health by gradually bringing in measures that help them improve their own health and vitality.
The approach of Herbal Medicine is appropriate for many conditions, but I would say that its main strength is in the treatment of chronic, complex conditions. Depending upon the level of health of the individual at the start of treatment it can take a few weeks or months – slowly but surely making improvements in health and well-being.
The following (non-exhaustive) list gives an idea of the types of conditions commonly seen by Medical Herbalists:
- Digestive problems such as irritable bowel, poor digestion, constipation, food intolerances;
- Low vitality and fatigue;
- Migraines, headaches and conditions exacerbated by stress;
- Chronic coughs, persistent catarrh and other respiratory conditions;
- Osteo-arthritis, gout, rheumatism and connective tissue problems such as fibromyalgia;
- Hormonal conditions such as period pain, PMT, peri and post menopausal problems;
- Urinary tract infections and benign prostate problems
- Skin conditions such as acne and eczema
- Mild high blood pressure and circulatory problems
- Anxiety and depression