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Why would I see an herbalist?

Posted by Philip Bramucci, R.H., Burning Tree Wellness on

This is the question I’m asked more than any other. It would actually be much easier for me to answer why you wouldn’t see an herbalist. It takes a lot less time than listing all the possible benefits of consulting one. But this conversation is dedicated to explaining the focus and goal of an herbalist and why we all need to have one.

Most of my friends and family call on me when they catch a cold or flu, are feeling down, drained, or can’t sleep well, because an herbalist can help guide them to build their immunity, nourish their adrenal systems, or help them relax and reduce anxiety. These may be the times an herbalist is most needed but these aren’t the times when it’s best to call on an herbalist. In fact, the very best time to visit an herbalist is when you think you don’t need one. I’m sure you’re not used to hearing that -- but allow me to explain.


Just because you’re not sick, doesn’t mean you’re healthy ~ Unknown Author


This next point reminds me of something we say in our martial arts school. We practice ground fighting, but we always start those lessons out by saying, “If you’re on the ground, you’ve already made a mistake. But you need to know what to do if it does happen.” So if you wait until you’re ill, you’ve already missed out on one of the best benefits of having an herbalist. By all means, except for emergencies, still call on us but don’t wait until you’re sick. An herbalist’s goal is to help you and teach you to nourish and maximize your body’s intrinsic ability to heal itself.

Unless you’re already “on the ground”, our focus isn’t to fight disease or “fix” you. You’re already built for that, designed with all the systems in place to be healthy. Our goal is to help you provide the nutrients and phytochemicals those systems require to do just that -- to do your best to keep off the ground and fight on your feet.


Natural forces within us are the true healers of disease ~ Hippocrates


Our diets have changed so much over the years. Even though we don’t always follow the guidelines, most of us already know what foods are harmful to us. The fried foods, the sugars, the excessive salt...let’s be honest, there is a multi-million dollar study on it every three months. 

“New Study Shows Diet and Exercise May Be Connected To Weight Loss”. 

I’m not going to spend time talking about what we shouldn’t eat. What’s important right now is -- what’s missing? The further back in time we go, the more we would see that the traditional diets and the recipes of old included many of the herbs and phytonutrients that we will discuss in our consultations. The same ones that contain the preventive elements to common chronic diseases we see and experience today. It sounds like I’m saying herbal medicine was their food. That’s because that is what I’m saying. In fact, even today many cultures don’t differentiate between the two -- food as medicine. How they’ve come to be so different in our culture isn’t hard to understand. A great book to read that explains this is Eating on the Wild Side, by Jo Robinson. It sounds like a book about foraging but it’s not. It explains how we’ve come to lose the medicinal value in our foods and what to look for in our diets to include as much as we can. She explains it beautifully and it’s an easy read that I recommend highly. 

My point isn’t to criticize the industry or place blame anywhere. The point is, it has created a need and we have to accept that. We need to relearn how our bodies use these phytonutrients. And to learn when we need them, how to use them, where to get them, what combination is right, what combination is wrong, etc. And this is the goal of an herbalist. It’s not only to make recommendations, but to teach their clients how to listen to their bodies and how to provide the proper elements that maintain wellness for their lives.


It is more important to know what sort of person has a disease than to know what sort of disease a person has ~ Hippocrates


During your visit, you should expect to do most of the talking. Your herbalist may ask questions to guide the conversation but they will spend a good deal of time letting you talk and listening closely to understand what makes you unique. From this information, they will take a holistic approach to your health. This means they will address the health of the whole body, mind, and spirit. Most herbalists are trained to make recommendations about herbs and nutrition, physical activity and exercise, as well as your spiritual and emotional well-being. All of these need to be healthy for the whole of you to be healthy.


The part can never be well unless the whole is well ~ Plato


With our habits today -- working at desks using computers and watching TV resulting in sedentary lifestyles that are devoid of nutrition while suspended in a state of constant stress and anxiety -- consulting with an herbalist, holistic health practitioner, or other types of energy healers and holistic professionals will start you on a path to wellness that only you can achieve for yourself.


Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter ~ Izaak Walton


Choosing your herbalist is important. So I’ll make it easy on you. Click here to contact us.

But really, picking your herbalist is an important decision and a very personal one. There are many titles. Family herbalist, medical herbalist, community herbalist, master herbalist, registered herbalist, and more. So ask your herbalist about their qualifications and decide for yourself if that is what you’re looking for. I’m not promoting any schools and no one is saying that an herbalist that was trained with knowledge passed down through the family is not qualified. I’m just saying it needs to be something that works for you and makes you comfortable. So do not be shy to ask your herbalist about their background. They should be happy to share. 




Information on this web site is provided for informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for the advice or care provided by your physician or licensed healthcare professional. This web site and its content should not be used to diagnose, treat, or prevent any health problem or disease. 

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