How to Heal with Herbs

Hay House Radio Episode Recap

  • Episode Name: “How to Heal with Herbs”
  • Live Broadcast: April 17th, 2016 at 3:00 pm Pacific Time
Episode Replays: Mondays at 11:00 pm Pacific Time / 2:00 am Eastern Time and Sundays at 2:00 pm Pacific Time / 5:00 pm Eastern Time

Episode Summary Re-cap

Did you know that common herbs in your own kitchen have healing properties?
Joining Heather is Herbalist, Rosalee de la Foret, who will reveal easy remedies you can make from common herbs. Discover the herbs that help you heal headaches, fatigue, digestive problems, colds, flu, stress, sleep issues and more! Learn some easy,
yummy recipes packed with healing antioxidants!
Rosalee de la ForetSpecial Guest: Rosalee de la Forêt

Rosalee de la Forêt, RH, is passionate about helping people discover the world of herbalism and natural health. Her teachings make herbs simple and practical for everyone. She is the Education Director at LearningHerbs and a Registered Herbalist with the American Herbalist Guild. Rosalee is the author of Alchemy of Herbs: Transforming Everyday Ingredients into Foods and Remedies that Heal as well as the online courses The Taste of Herbs, Herbal Cold Care, and Apothecary: The Alchemy of Herbs Video Companion.

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Using Food and Herbs as Medicine for Autoimmune Disease, Pain and Chronic Health Conditions

Rosalee was diagnosed with a rare, untreatable autoimmune condition and was given a grim prognosis by her doctors. Since mainstream medicine said there was nothing she could do, she asked herself, “since Western medicine doesn’t  have my answers, what else can I do?”

This one critical question – what else can I do? – set Rosalee on the right path of to solve her health challenges. She took steps to change her diet and focus on using food as medicine. She also began studying how herbs and spices could support her health and wellness.

Healing Benefits of Herbs

Humans have been interacting with plants for their medicinal properties for thousands of years. Today, science validates the benefits of herbs. Rosalee used over 250 scientific studies for the 29 herbs she highlighted in her book, Alchemy of Herbs: Transforming Everyday Ingredients into Foods and Remedies that Heal.

  • Antioxidant Rich, Anti-Aging – Herbs and spices are chock full of healing antioxidants, which help protect the body from damaging free radicals.
  • Lemon Balm for Radiation, Relaxation – One of her favorite scientific studies was on lemon balm tea, which was found to protect the body from radiation. Lemon balm can be a great option if you want protection from low level radiation like x-rays and airline travel.
    Lemon balm is also great as an antidote to stress because it has a relaxing effect. 15 – 30 grams of tea in a quart of water is excellent.
    Be aware that some animal studies show that lemon balm could be problematic for someone with low thyroid, so while herbalists have not seen this in humans, it may be a good idea to limit lemon balm if you have low thyroid.
  • Ashwaganda for Stress, Grounding, Sleep, Nervous System, Anxiety  Ashwaganda is a good daily herb to nourish and rebuild your nervous system and reduce stress. It’s also very calming and can be a helpful remedy to combat stress, aid sleep and reduce anxiety.
  • Cammomile for Relaxation and Sleep  Infuse cammomile for 10 – 15 minutes as an incredible way to relax before bed.
  • Turmeric for Inflammation, Arthritis, Back Pain, and Chronic Pain  Turmeric has been shown to reduce inflammation and relieve pain and arthritis. Be aware that turmeric can be drying. If your mouth or skin is dry, you have night sweats or hot flashes, you may want to take less turmeric. Alternatively, you can mix turmeric with milk or a healthy fat, like ghee, to offset the drying effects.
  • Ginger and Cayenne for Metabolic Support and Weight Loss  These are warming herbs, which can be helpful to boost metabolism for weight loss. It’s also helpful to work on normalizing blood sugar, like eating more healthy fats, proteins, and non-starchy vegetables.

How to Tell Which Herbs Are Right For You

Herbal Energetics

There are four qualities to look for in your body, which Rosalee calls “herbal energetics. These are qualities to look for as signs for which herbs are benefical for you. Once you identify which of these qualities pertain to you, you can identify herbs that will bring balance to these qualities.

You can take the quizzes in Rosalee’s book to get clear about these qualities:

  • Hot – Are you always hot? Is your voice loud? Is your face red or does it get flushed easily? Is your tongue bright read? Do you have a lot of opinions and you aren’t afraid to share them? Do you tend to want cooler climates? Are you more active than others? Is your digestion strong?
  • Cold – Look for cold hands and feet or if  you are always the cold one in the room. Do you prefer a warmer climate?
  • Dry – Is your skin or hair dry?
  • Damp – Is your skin or hair oily or moist?

The 5 Tastes Also Gives Clues for Which Herbs to Choose for Balance

Your body is always seeking balance. If you feel off, have weight issues or experience many cravings, you may benefit from balancing your meals with the five tastes. In Chinese medicine, it’s said that we feel more balanced and satisfied when a meal contains the five tastes.

The five tastes are:

  1. Pungent – spicy and aromatic, like rosemary, thyme, turmeric, parsley and black pepper. They can break up congestion, encourage circulation, stimulate digestion and are warming. They tend to taste good and can increase digestive fire.
  2. Salty – these have a strong mineral, salty taste. They are often nutrient-dense, like seaweed, oatstraw, violets and chickweed. They help regulate fluids in your body, like urine and lymph.
  3. Sour – stimulate digestion, increase body strength, help assimilate nutrients better. Most fruits and astringent herbs are classified as sour.
  4. Sweet – these herbs are building and nourishing. They can help combat stress and tend to be higher in carbohydrates and polysaccharides, like astragalus and ashwaganda.
  5. Bitter – more cooling in nature, stimulate digestion and can help cool things down if you have signs of heat or dampness.

Herbal Tips for Your Unique Needs

  • Start low and slow – Especially if you are empathic or highly sensitive, start with a small amount and build from there. Give your body a chance to respond. Keep in mind that even if an herb works for you, you can have too much of a good thing.
  • Listen to your body – Notice the way your body is reacting or responding to herbs. Let your body guide you as to what is working and what is not working. We are all unique and not every herb works for every person. If one does not work for you, choose another.

Get Rosalee’s recipe for Bitter Fennel Digestive Pastilles

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Tune in Next Week

Alexandra JamiesonTune in next week to Loving Yourself to Great Health, What happens when you start taking steps for your own health, sanity and recovery and your friends, family and community judge or reject you for it? How do you stand strong in your beliefs? How do you trust your inner voice? Alexandra Jamieson joins me to talk everything from dietary dogma to body image, women’s reproductive health, and standing up for what you believe in.


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As a coach, writer and recovered former executive, I understand the challenges of creating a balanced, healthy lifestyle when over-scheduled. In my journey to radiant health, I created a whole health system of eating, exercise, renewal and recharging -- a roadmap toward health & vitality. I empower clients to create their own whole health systems, in their own unique ways. I have seen amazing results in working with my clients!