Emma is an herbalist with training from Udemy courses and the Centre of Excellence, UK online. As herbalism is lifelong, so is learning.
Herbalism and Balancing the Mind, Body, and Soul
Herbalism isn’t just a foray into a different aspect of Western (or so-called “modern”) Medicine. Herbalism goes back thousands of years for bringing balance back to the body when the internal energies are misaligned. Chinese Medicine, Indian healing, Egyptian and Greek practices all used herbs to create medicine and treat ailing patients.
Herbalism takes a more holistic approach and is welcomed at naturopathic and certain homeopathic clinics, where the doctors and nurses treat the mind, body, and soul.
Unfortunately, with all the advances of modern medicine, we (a collective of humanity) have stopped seeking out that necessary balance between mind, body, and soul, and instead seek to address only one or two aspects of our health. That leaves a lack of conversation with our medical professionals, and leaves us seeking a solution for symptoms - some that might be only temporary, and some that fall into the chronic category.
Herbalism works best when incorporated into the daily life: via teas, tinctures added to drinks, as spices or otherwise added to meals, and incorporated into your skin-care routines.
Thyme, rosemary, sage, oregano, cayenne, cardamom, ginger, turmeric...these are only a few of the herbs and spices found in most Western kitchens. Thyme, rosemary, sage are all good for opening the airways and aiding in clearing out the breathing passages. Cayenne and turmeric are good for soothing inflammation because of the heat they bring to the body. Of course, there are many more found in the kitchen cabinet or pantry, and most people prefer their food seasoned for taste. By simply continuing to use or adding just a few spices, you can increase your herbal intake.
Tinctures are generally created by an herbalist and can be sold in stores such as natural food stores and co-ops. Tinctures range in method of creation to maceration liquid, such as 80 proof alcohol to 190 proof (Vodka to Everclear), liquid glycerin, and apple cider vinegar. Shelf life of tinctures varies based on the liquid used and proper storage of the tincture in a dark glass bottle. (I prefer glass for storage and maceration, though I have seen some herbalists suggesting using small plastic bottles. I don’t advise that for long-term storage, but for creating a few doses and/or to make it easier to take the tincture in a short time period would be acceptable.)
Skin and Hair Care
There are many hair and skin care products that use herbs already, such as tea tree oil, almond oil, coconut oil, cocoa, avocado, body butters, and the like. The labels make claims such as “soothing relief for sore and inflamed skin”, “rejuvenate aged skin”, “dandruff killer”, “rebuild protein in your hair and nails“, and so forth. By looking for natural products that include herbs in their creation, you have another avenue of incorporating herbs into your daily life.
Bringing Balance Back
Herbs help the body realign itself to its natural energies, bringing balance back to the mind and body. We can do this by cooking, creating teas or searching for herbal teas at the grocery store, taking tinctures, and using natural products that include herbs in their production.
Balance includes mind, body, and spirit/soul. When the body is out of balance, this can lead to fatigue, brain fog, chemical imbalances that influence or interfere with the thinking processes, and other mental distress. When the mind is out of balance, the body is out of balance. When the spirit/soul is out of balance, the body and mind will also be out of balance. You can bring your spirit/soul back into balance by attending a house of worship, whether that be a temple, church, or other place of gathering and fellowship with believers (no matter your religion or denomination), practicing forest bathing (shiruken), having a private practice of prayer and meditation, and centering yourself.
Another way you can bring balance back to your body’s energies is by utilizing the Emotional Freedom Technique, or Tapping. We’ll get into that in further articles.
More to Come
I look forward to delving into the world of herbalism with you.
I am *NOT* a licensed medical provider and the writings and thoughts I share are intended only for education, never to treat or provide medical advice.
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.