Podcast 070: Health Is Your Right … And Your Responsibility

This is what we say at the beginning of every episode:

We are not doctors. We are herbalists and holistic health educators. The ideas discussed in this podcast do not constitute medical advice.

No state or federal authority licenses herbalists in the US; these discussions are for educational purposes only. Everyone’s body is different, so the things we’re talking about may or may not apply directly to you – but they will give you some information to think about and research further.

We wish to remind you that good health is your own personal responsibility: the final decision in considering any course of therapy – whether discussed on the internet or prescribed by your physician – is always yours.

Each of the many issues raised in this statement is very important to us, including but not limited to: the legal definition of the practice of medicine, scope of practice for holistic health professionals, individual biological and situational variation, rights as necessarily intercausal with responsiblities, and others. In today’s podcast, we’re going to break it down and explain exactly why we repeat this so frequently, and why we feel it matters so much. We hope you’ll listen in!

Mentioned in this podcast:


Episode Transcript

Katja: 00:00:16 Hi! I’m Katya.

Ryn: 00:00:17 And I’m ryn.

Katja: 00:00:18 And we’re here at the Commonwealth Center for Holistic Herbalism in Boston, Massachusetts.

Ryn: 00:00:21 And on the Internet everywhere, Thanks to the power of the podcast.

Katja: 00:00:25 Woohoo!

Ryn: 00:00:26 Yeah. Let’s start with the shout-outs this time. Let’s jump right into them.

Katja: 00:00:30 Yeah, let’s do it. So first to Australia, a shout out to “stardustplants” who was listening while starting her fall seeds and also to Gulu Baliatto who sent us a photo of a kangaroo who was listening to the pod outside her window. And I think that is cool! We posted the kangaroo, picture to our Instagram so… You guys can see it if you want to.

Ryn: 00:00:55 Does that count as a listener?

Katja: 00:00:56 Yes!

Ryn: 00:00:57 Put that in our stack first.

Katja: 00:00:58 It’s our first marsupial pod listener.

Ryn: 00:01:01 Nice. That totally is going in the book.

Katja: 00:01:03 Yeah.

Ryn: 00:01:04 Cool. We have another shout-out to “catchamickey” on Instagram who listened to the pod all the time. Yay. All right,

Katja: 00:01:11 Awesome!

Ryn: 00:01:11 Thank you.

Katja: 00:01:12 And then um, “forkinthetree” and Mindy Moon wrote us reviews on iTunes, which we love. Thank you so much!

Ryn: 00:01:21 Yeah!

Katja: 00:01:21 And also Mindy Moon was saying that they’re listening in Bolivia and that is super cool. I think you’re the first listener in Bolivia. Or if not, the first one who has told us.

Ryn: 00:01:32 The first one to tell, yeah. Yes, for sure.

Katja: 00:01:34 If you have trouble, you had mentioned in the review about finding the herbs with the Spanish names. If you have any trouble with that, feel free to write us an email. We are happy to help with that. Just send it to info@commonwealthherbs.com and we will help you figure out what it is that you are looking for.

Ryn: 00:01:54 Yeah, do it.

Katja: 00:01:55 Yeah.

Ryn: 00:01:56 All right.

Katja: 00:01:56 You guys also, I think that there are some shout-outs that are still in my inbox. I’m really behind on my inbox. I’m super sorry. So if you’re waiting for email from me, um, I love you and I’m just really behind on my inbox, but I will be caught up by next week.

Ryn: 00:02:11 Yeah, we’ll do it. Okay. So usually every week on our podcast we say the following: we’re not doctors. We are herbalists and holistic health educators.

Katja: 00:02:24 The ideas discussed in this podcast do not constitute medical advice. No state or federal authority licenses herbalists in the United States. So these discussions are for educational purposes only. Everyone’s body is different. So the things that we’re talking about may or may not apply directly to you, but they will give you some information to think about and research more.

Ryn: 00:02:43 We wish to remind you that good health is your own personal responsibility. The final decision in considering any course of therapy, whether it’s discussed on the internet or prescribed by your physician, is always yours. So that’s what we say every time. And if you’ve been listening, then maybe you sort of block that part out or you’re like, “oh, they’re doing that thing. Okay, I can tune in and again in a moment”. Or maybe you even skip ahead with the little 30-second skip button. It’s okay. I’m not mad about it. But I do want..we did both want to take a little time this week and dig into this disclaimer a little bit and talk about why we think it’s important. Not just to protect ourselves and to protect you, but also as a statement of principle–

Katja: 00:03:30 –yeah–

Ryn: 00:03:30 –and of the ethics that we think are relevant to these kinds of work. So we thought this week what we would do is we would break it down piece by piece and talk about why each of these lines is in here and what it is that we’re referring to and thinking about when we say these things.

Katja: 00:03:46 Yeah.

We are Not Doctors

Ryn: 00:03:47 So we can start with the beginning. We are not doctors, we are herbalists and holistic health educators. So that’s very similar to the way we begin our “informed disclosure” form. So this is what we give to clients when they come in for a consultation and they’re going to sit down and we’re going to talk to them for awhile and come up with a plan for their health. Before we start anything, we give them this piece of paper. It starts out with, “I am not a doctor, I am an herbalist and an educator.” and it continues on from there. I’d actually like to read it for you. So from there it says: “Herbally, I work in a holistic paradigm. Nutritionally I work with the principles of traditional nutrition or ancestral nutrition and slow food, which you know, as opposed to fast food. In all cases, my primary goal is to help you nourish and support your body so that it can heal itself. I am happy to provide you with information and research in writing that you can discuss with your other healthcare providers at any time. You should notify your physicians of any herbs or supplements that you are taking. It is your responsibility to notify me of any prescription medications you are using. Herbs work over time. However, if at anytime you don’t feel happy with any recommendations or if you feel you might be having an adverse reaction, please let me know and we will work to find something that you are comfortable with. Good health is your own personal responsibility. The final decision and considering any recommendation, whether to follow it or not is always yours. And finally, the nature of this appointment is educational. It is important to me that you have a good understanding of what we discuss, no matter how many questions you need to ask or how long it takes us to get clear.” So we give that to the person we ask them to sign it and date it and to ask us any questions that it may have brought up for them. Again, you can see a lot of the language is very similar to what we say to you all on our podcast each week because a lot of the same considerations are at play here.

Katja: 00:05:51 Yeah.

Ryn: 00:05:52 Yeah.

Katja: 00:05:52 It’s really important to us that this be as plain-speech and transparent as possible. So you’ll notice that it does not sound like a legal document at all.

Ryn: 00:06:03 There are very few semi-colons here,[katja laughs] which for us is saying something.

Katja: 00:06:08 Yes. I would also like to note that there are no exclamation points in this document, which also is pretty impressive…for me at any rate. But it is really important for us. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with having a lawyer write your disclosure form. But this document does address all of the legal issues. But it does it in words that are just plain speech. And that’s part of how we practice. And it’s part of making our work accessible to people. I don’t want to do anything that is intimidating. I don’t want to do anything that disempowers people or that makes it hard to understand. So it’s super important to me that instead of having a document that might have language that’s a little bit intimidating.

Ryn: 00:07:03 Or “hold harmless and indemnify..”

Katja: 00:07:05 Yeah.

Ryn: 00:07:07 “from [grumbles nonsense sounds]”.

Katja: 00:07:09 Right! That’s the thing. It’s just obtuse and I really want everything to be overt, transparent on the table, really clear. Also to be really clear that people understand that I am not gonna be offended if they want to go and ask their doctor’s opinion about what I’ve suggested. I think that’s great. And not only that, and I’m happy to empower them by writing it out for them in a way that they could take to their other healthcare providers. I also am super happy to work with their other healthcare providers directly as a team member. You know,I don’t think that herbalism has to be practiced to the exclusion of any other form of health care. I think that everybody can work together. So I want to make that really clear and I wanna make really clear that this is an educational session, that this is a chance for my clients to learn something. And if that is true, then that means that we will stay here until stuff is clear. I do not want anybody to just take my word for it. I don’t want anybody to just sort of say, “Well, I dunno, this is what she told me to do.” I want people to really be able to say, “This is what I have decided with my herbalist is the right decision for my body. I understand the purpose of what actions I’m taking and I believe that they are worth the experiment and I will do the experiment with them and determine whether or not I get the results that we are anticipating”.

Ryn: 00:08:49 Yeah. Right. So it all starts with “I am not a doctor” and there’s an reason for that and a lot of it actually has to do with legalities. So much of what I’m about to say, you can also read in text form. I have an article on our website called “Herbalism and the Law” and a lot of it is about the way that this plays out in Massachusetts in particular. But the general concepts here are going to extend to whatever state you happen to be in. So, for those of you who are herbalists, because we have a lot of different kinds of folks listening, then much of what I’m about to say should either be familiar to you or it should sound like thoughts you’ve had before. Um, if it’s all brand new, then if you’re seeing clients, then you have some work to do, my friend. You need to definitely get yourself an informed disclosure form. It can be like ours, or can be legalistic. There are lots of options and ways to go about that, but you need to make clear to people certain things about what it is you’re about to do together. The root of a lot of this is that herbalists and alternative practitioners of many kinds don’t frequently get in trouble because they gave something to someone and that “something”, let’s say an herb, made that person worse off than they were before, or made them very sick, or killed them. That doesn’t happen very frequently. When herbalists and other kinds of holistic health practitioners get in trouble in our modern society, it’s usually under the rubric of the crime called “practicing medicine without a license”. That’s the kind of trouble folks get in. There was a recent case where it was a serious issue. It was a child who was diabetic and their parents were seeing somebody who proclaimed himself to be a master herbalist, and was telling them things like, “No, don’t bother with insulin, don’t go to the hospital. Just do what I say and everything will be fine”.

Katja: 00:10:59 Nooooo!

Ryn: 00:10:59 And so that’s all very frustrating, but it’s important in this moment to keep in mind that what he was brought to court for wasn’t “you gave this person herbs and made them sick”. It was “you told this person to ignore a doctor’s advice” or it was “you put yourself out there as a medical authority that could take control of this person’s medical decisions”. And that means you were, in those moments, practicing medicine. Whatever you call yourself, if you do those acts–if you say those specific words–now you are practicing medicine without a license. In general, there are some key terms that we need to avoid, like “diagnose”, “treat”, “prevent” and “cure”. And you may be familiar with that. If you look at, say, an herbal supplement and you find a little disclosure on it that says “The FDA has not analyzed these claims. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any illness or ailment”. That’s there for similar reasons. Now, we’ll come back around to herbal products in a minute, but for the moment let’s stick with herbal practice. Where this caution about language or this issue of reserved terms comes from is actually specific for each state in the U.S. and presumably there may be similar issues in other countries. I’m not sure if each German state has its own medical practice act or if they have a national one.

Katja: 00:12:26 I’m not sure how that works.

Ryn: 00:12:28 Yeah. So, this would be something to dig into about the country or province, whatever it is you happen to live in, to see how that plays out. Anyway, in the U.S. it’s defined state to state. In Massachusetts, there’s a chapter in our general laws here that describes which professions shall have a board of registration and examination, which is the licensing board. And those by the way are considered state agencies. They make regulations that apply to the people under that license. They set the scope of practice. They define the practice of medicine as far as physicians go, or doctors go. So it can be illustrative to take a look at those both to see what exactly your specific state enshrines in the law and what it leaves out. And also just as a general idea to get a sense of what is being done in these kinds of documents. I’m gonna read a piece from the Massachusetts one to you because I think this is instructive. It says: “The practice of medicine means the following conduct; the purpose or reasonably foreseeable effect of which is to encourage the reliance of another person upon an individual’s knowledge or skill in the maintenance of human health by the prevention, alleviation or cure of disease and involving or reasonably thought to involve an assumption of responsibility for the other person’s physical or mental wellbeing.” And now follows the conduct in question, right? “Diagnosis, treatment, use of instruments or other devices or the prescribing, administering, dispensing or distributing of drugs for the relief of diseases or adverse physical or mental conditions.” So I tried to use my voice a little bit there to call out a few things that are worth noting. So first of all, there are a bunch of key terms that are, that are included in this paragraph: prevention, alleviation, cure, treatment, diagnosis, prescription, administration, dispensing, and finally diseases and conditions. Because in this context what they’re referring to are diseases as defined by the medical establishment. So if you as a practitioner were to say to somebody “You have diabetes”, then you have just diagnosed them with a medical condition. But if you were to say to them, “I’m observing patterns of stagnant fluid and trapped heat in your body based on what I see and what you’ve described to me”, then in that moment you are not practicing medicine because you are not diagnosing anybody with a medical condition. If you said, “I diagnose you with a stagnant liver and trapped heat”, then you would be again. So you can see that there is a bit of nuance to this and there’s a necessity to kind of change the way that a lot of us habitually think about health and about healing and speak about it.

Katja: 00:15:28 I want to say one other option there, which is if you were to say, “You know, a lot of these symptoms trigger some red flags for me about diabetes and I really think that you should make an appointment with your primary care physician and get yourself tested”. That would not be practicing medicine. That’s education. But if you notice something that is diagnosable, it doesn’t mean that you can’t talk about it. It just means that you need to leave that in the purview of the doctors and say, “Hey, I think that this is what’s going on for you. And you know, that’s pretty serious. I think that you should maybe just get tested”.

Ryn: 00:16:12 Yeah. The law there, it goes on to say a person who holds himself or herself out to the public as a physician or surgeon or uses the initials MD or DO in connection with his or her name and who also assumes responsibility for another person’s physical or mental wellbeing is engaged in the practice of medicine. So let’s come back to that because it’s there, the “assumes responsibility for the person’s physical or mental wellbeing”. That phrase is there. It’s an earlier paragraph and the other phrase there, “encouraged the reliance of that person upon your knowledge or skill”.

Katja: 00:16:47 All of those things give me the creepy crawlies.

Ryn: 00:16:48 Yeah. Well, we’re not the kind of practitioners who want to do that.

Katja: 00:16:52 Yeah. [cellphone rings] Oops. Sorry guys.

The Final Decision is Always Yours

Ryn: 00:16:56 You know, that kind of bleeds into some of the other things in our informed disclosure document there, right? Like we’re clear there that we’re not trying to encourage this person to be reliant upon us. That’s why we say good health is your own personal responsibility. The final decision in any recommendation, whether to follow it or not, is always yours. And in our podcast intro, we make that even a little more explicit by saying “whether it’s discussed on the internet or prescribed by your physician”, that’s still always your choice. That’s still always your decision. We’d like to highlight that for people.

Katja: 00:17:31 Yeah. Especially because our current conventional medical model doesn’t make it super comfortable for you to question your physician or to say, “Hold on. I’m not sure that I’m really into that idea”. I know some physicians are completely into that type collaboration with their patients, but the model itself is not geared towards that. The model itself is to say, “I will dispense my authority and then you will do what I have said”. What we’d like to see is people feeling empowered to take control of that and to say, “,I’d like to know what my options are. I’d like to fully understand my options, and then I’d like to make my choice about which of those options I’m going to want to choose”. Anything that you do is an experiment. If you take an antibiotic, that’s an experiment. If you have a surgery that’s an experiment. If you get braces, that’s an experiment. You’re saying, “I think that this is what’s going to happen. I think that I understand what’s happening in my body. I think that this intervention will have a particular outcome and now I’m going to take it and find out if that’s true”, but we’ve all had the experience of taking something and then not having the outcome we expected or having a procedure and not having the outcome that you expect. I can remember when I was a kid and I had a wart on my finger and we went to get it frozen off and my mom was like, “Oh, we’re just going to go get frozen off and then it’ll be taken care of”. And that did not take care of it. And that’s okay. But that idea that, you know, this stuff is infallible on any level… It’s better if we go into it really with open eyes about like, “Well, I’m going to try this thing and see if it works and if it doesn’t work, I will try the next thing and see if that works”. Health care providers have more than one option. So that’s okay. If it doesn’t work it, we don’t have to panic about it. But I just think that it’s a little bit more freeing when we look at these things all as experiments. And I think that it also gives a little bit more respect to the fact that all bodies are different. And just because we’ve got scientific studies that show that this particular thing, will correct this particular problem in these particular bodies does not necessarily mean that all that stuff will happen in every single body. And that’s okay too.

Ryn: 00:20:05 Yeah. Right. So, okay. A couple other thoughts on the legality side there,and how this, how this is really part of the same process as what you were just describing. Again, I can choose to avoid those words for my own legal safety as a practitioner, I can say to myself, “Alright, I’m not allowed to say ‘diagnose’. What can I say instead? Can I say ‘assess’?, Oh, cool. That’s not written in that law. So I’ll just say that I’ve made this assessment about you. My assessment is that this, that, and the other thing is your problem and you need to solve it in this way”. But that’s not really what I like to do either because while it’s true that any given medical diagnosis is an abstraction, it’s a terminology, it’s depersonalizing the individual and turning them into a diagnosis so that they can be manipulated in the usually approved way and then they’re no longer your problem.

Katja: 00:21:08 It’s like labeling.

Ryn: 00:21:09 Yeah. So those are limits all on their own. And those are things, those are like games that I don’t want to play or the kind of work that I don’t want to do. And it’s important because it is easy to get hung up on a diagnosis. Right? Especially because people walk in with them to go and see you as the herbalist. So when somebody comes in and says, “I want to talk to you because I’ve got Lyme disease”, or “I have PTSD and I was hoping there’s some herbs that can help out with that”, it’s very easy to let that define the parameters of your interaction and your relationship. And now you’re starting to think like, all right, what’s my Lyme protocol? What’s the first step? What’s the second step? What are the three herbs I need to make sure I have in stock for this person?

Katja: 00:21:46 Right.

Ryn: 00:21:46 And this is before you’ve even seen them, right? Before you’ve shaken their hand and felt what their skin tone is like and looked in their eyes and see what kind of vital force presentation they’ve got going on there and all the other kinds of things that are in large part indispensable to the work that we try to do. So it’s normal to reduce people to a problem or to reduce a problem to like, “Okay, we’ve got that boxed off and labeled and now we know just what to do with it”. But that’s not helpful. And it’s certainly not a holistic approach to the situation.

Katja: 00:22:20 And also I don’t have a Lyme protocol. I do have sort of a guiding strategy, but I don’t have a PTSD protocol. I don’t have any of that stuff. I don’t base my work around diagnoses. A diagnosis is medical jargon. That is a language, it is a word that means a bunch of things so that doctors can communicate with one another faster than listing out all the symptoms that they’re talking about. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that at all, but my language might not match up with that language. And, I am a person who speaks a bunch of languages. That’s a thing that I studied. And so this makes a lot of sense to me on an inherent level. But if you just think about it, if you have several friends who all speak some different languages and then you put something on the table, you put an apple on the table in front of all those friends, they all have the capability to describe that apple in many different languages, in many different words. And you do too. Even if you’re only using one language, you could describe it as sweet. You could describe it as juicy. You could talk about the color, you could talk about it from a phytochemical perspective about the different fructose and the, you know, all the different whatevers.

Ryn: 00:23:43 You could say “That’s my apple!”

Katja: 00:23:45 That’s right!

Ryn: 00:23:45 I’ve described it in this way.

Katja: 00:23:46 Yeah! There are so many ways to describe it. And so I don’t want to imply that medical diagnoses are the only way to describe what’s going on for a person. I think that they’re not invalid, but we can get too tied to them as an identity. We can believe that they are permanent and not changeable. And also, even if they are accurate and appropriate, that doesn’t mean that’s the only description. The more descriptive words we have actually, maybe the better. So, I don’t have a protocol for a diagnosis. I’m build a protocol for an individual based on “How can I help that person be strong and be resilient and have energy and have vitality?”. And that takes \way more into account than a diagnosed word.

Ryn: 00:24:52 Yeah. Yeah. And that that gets into some of the other things that we have in our in our weekly disclaimer that we put on this podcast, right? So we talk about how the ideas discussed in this podcast do not constitute medical advice because we’re not over here taking responsibility for your medical conditions or your medical decisions. We don’t want to, and we couldn’t possibly do that in this format anyways. [both laugh].

Katja: 00:25:17 Right.

Ryn: 00:25:17 That’s all handy. We go on to say that no state or federal authority licenses herbalists in the U.S. and that these discussions are for educational purposes only. And again, that’s the same thing we could say to a client that, you know, I’m not a licensed practitioner and I want you to understand what that means. That means for one thing that I don’t have a piece of paper that I can show you that means that the state says I’m allowed to do what we’re about to do. The only thing that makes me allowed to do what I do is you coming here and going along with it and I want you to be a conscious participant in that relation.

Katja: 00:25:52 An active empowered participant.

Ryn: 00:25:54 Yeah, and so we direct you to education, right? We frame everything in the context of education, both because that protects us under first amendment privileges–here in the U.S. that’s free speech for those of you from other countries. But it also is an accurate description of what we’re trying to accomplish.

Katja: 00:26:15 Yeah.

Ryn: 00:26:15 Like this isn’t just covering your ass stuff here. This is like, “wait, what am I really trying to do with this person?” I want to teach them. I want to share some of what I know that seems relevant to what they’re doing and then give them the understanding that they’re going to continue to learn from the herbs after they’ve learned a little bit about the herbs from me. Right? And that’s the education that really matters in the long run.

Katja: 00:26:40 Or even talking about it from a food perspective. If I’m working with somebody and I say, “hey listen, I think that your sugar consumption is really contributing to the level of inflammation that’s going on in your body right now”. I need to convince them to be invested enough. I need to educate them enough so that it seems like a good idea for them to do an experiment of reducing the amount of sugar that they eat. Because I am not going to be there every time they look at an Oreo and consider eating it. I’m not going to be there to like smack it out of their hand and say, “I thought you were gonna get rid of sugar”. That’s not the role that I’m playing. But my role is: I can talk to you about why I think this is a good idea. I can make sure that it all makes sense to you. And then you’re the one who gets to decide if that’s the right decision for you right now.

Everyone’s Body is Different

Ryn: 00:27:27 Yeah, and then that goes directly into everyone’s body is different. So the things we’re talking about may or may not apply directly to you. Now in an individual consultation, we’re going to sort that out and we’re going to ask questions and they’re gonna answer them. And that’s going to help us figure out whether it applies to them and choose which subjects we educate on or which herbs we talk about or which dietary interventions or whatever. It matters to us to say this because it’s one of the fundamental truths of working with individuals and not with diagnoses that everybody is different, right? So, you know, I see somebody and they come in and they’re focused on their diagnosis for high blood pressure and they want some herbs to bring it down. I could just say, all right, well here’s my list of blood pressure lowering herbs. Here’s my list of herbal antihypertensives or, you know, I could frame it in lots of ways, but, um, if I do that, then I’m not going to be thinking, okay, what kind of person is in front of me? What’s their constitution? What else is going on in their body? And in their life, like what’s driving their blood pressure up?

Katja: 00:28:32 Yeah. What do I actually want to achieve here? Do I just want to change the number on a test or do I actually want to figure out what’s going on in this person’s life and help them see how they could make changes in their life so that stuff would be different.

Ryn: 00:28:46 Yeah. So you know, that’s going to be one of the ways that we get from a list of herbs that had been somewhere shown to lower blood pressure down to for YOU we’re going to get Hawthorne, we’re gonna get Linden, we’re going get Motherwort. That’s going to be your drink. You’re gonna prepare it this way. Oh wait, you’re too busy to make tea? Well, okay, there’s, there’s some talk we have to get into there for a minute, but all right, what if we just want to roll with it? Okay. Then we’re going to format it in this way. And so there’s lots of decisions that are dependent on, you know, honestly, not just the person’s body being different. Maybe we should add in everyone’s body and everyone’s situation is different.

Katja: 00:29:23 Yeah, their environment is different. And I was just thinking actually about what if, so all those herbs that you listed are herbs that would cross reference on a high blood pressure list of herbs. Tulsi isn’t necessarily though, and Wood Betony isn’t necessarily,

Ryn: 00:29:42 I haven’t seen that kind of label applied to that plant.

Katja: 00:29:45 Right. And skullcap isn’t necessarily, and what if this person was experiencing high blood pressure because actually they were super stressed out and it was hard for them to leave their work at work and they were really anxious and their mind was really spun up and it was just hard for them to calm down about it in a mental place? And that was really powering a lot of stress, which was leading to the high blood pressure. Well, if I worked with those three herbs, with tulsi, wood betony, and skullcap, they don’t necessarily have anything to do with high blood pressure, but I’m not trying to deal with high blood pressure. I’m trying to help this person get more comfortable in their life. And the way I’m gonna work with that is to help them manage the stress better, to help them be able to calm and quiet their mind. I’m not trying to work on their diagnosis of high blood pressure. I’m trying to work on their overall health and comfort in the way that they move through the world.

Ryn: 00:30:43 Yeah. Right. So we want to give them some information. We want to give them, like we give you information to think about and research further, right? Like we always say, that’s what we’re doing with other folks. And some of that information may come in the form of here’s a sampler tea blend to take home with you because now you’ve seen us make it.

Katja: 00:31:03 Yeah, we’ve made it together even.

Ryn: 00:31:05 Yeah. Yup. You, had your hands on the plants, you stirred them up, you put them in the bag, right?

Katja: 00:31:09 Which is more education. It’s like, this may be something unfamiliar to you when you walked in the door, but now you’ve done it yourself and it’s becoming familiar to you. I don’t want to have some weird black box thing. I want what I do to be familiar to people or at least the things that I suggest that they decide are good ideas for them. I want them to build an intimate familiarity with those things and I don’t want to have any magic secrets that they can’t reproduce for themselves, so I want to teach them exactly how we make it. Now I don’t mind if I have to teach it more than once, that’s totally fine.But, if somebody leaves here with some tea, it’s because we made it together so that they could really see, well how much am I going to put in there and what is it going to look like when I blend it up and, okay, you told me where to order it, but what’s it going to look like when I get it and what should I do with it when I get it? I want to explain all that stuff because ultimately I don’t want my clients to need me. I don’t want them to be reliant on me. I want to teach them to be self sufficient. I want to teach them to be resilient. I want to teach them to have this knowledge for themselves and frankly that they can share with other people too.

Ryn: 00:32:27 Yeah. And so, you know, we like to remind you every week that good health is your own personal responsibility. And that doesn’t mean that if you’re sick, then you have failed as a person and you’re in big trouble according to katja. No, it doesn’t mean that at all. It means that–

Katja: 00:32:42 –If it did, we’d be in trouble because we had the flu recently.

Ryn: 00:32:46 We failed our responsibility there. No, it means that good health is your right, and rights and responsibilities are two sides of the same coin. And that means that your right to making your decisions about your own health is something that I’m not going to take away from you and that I think it would be good for all of us to try and remember that we have that right to make these decisions and not to abdicate it too freely. There are some situations where you do need to rely on the expertise of somebody, right?

Katja: 00:33:23 Oh yeah.

Ryn: 00:33:23 If I have a tumor in my lung, I’m going to go and see an oncologist and we’re going to talk and they’re going to tell me their ideas and there are going to be some aspects of that interaction that I’m not going to be able to catch up on in the time it takes to make the decision.

Katja: 00:33:37 Right.

Ryn: 00:33:38 When the deadline comes, right? And we have to do something about it now.

Katja: 00:33:41 And also regardless of how well I understand it, I will not be the one using the knife. It’s not going to happen.[laughter] I can teach you to make tea, but I don’t know how anybody could ever teach me how to use a knife to cut out my own cancer. No. I would like to rely on an oncologist to do that for me. Thank you.

Ryn: 00:34:00 Yeah. But they did what we like to say is the decision when considering of course of therapy, that is yours. Right? And that consideration includes asking for more education, asking more questions, saying, well, okay, but what if I don’t? What happens then? That can be a very revealing question in a lot of contexts. Yeah, we get that from clients all the time. Well, what if I take the tea but I don’t change my diet? What if I like take a few drops of tincture every day, but I don’t go for a walk every day. Is this still gonna work? That’s a great question because it also helps us to like set some expectations. Expectations for like what, what do we expect to happen from here on forward for you.

Katja: 00:34:46 I think that whenever you’re feeling those questions on the inside, it’s really important to verbalize them also because those questions are revealing about your reality right now. Maybe you don’t see how you could fit a daily walk into your life. It’s just like, “yeah, I get that, that sounds like a great idea and it is literally not a possibility for me right now”. And so asking that question of like, well great, but what if I don’t? That’s a really important thing to work with with a practitioner because then you start to realize, oh, I have made a recommendation that regardless of how good the idea is, is just simply not applicable to your life right now. And perhaps I should come up with a better suggestion. So I think it’s always anytime that you’re thinking, what if I don’t do that? I don’t, I don’t know if I like that idea. I think verbalizing it is really important.

Ryn: 00:35:46 Yeah. And you know, I mean, as herbalists we’re often somebody’s last stop. And that could be coming after, you know, 30 years of going to different practitioners and trying all of the conventional stuff and trying a bunch of way out there woo stuff. And then they come around to see us and they’re like, all right, what have you got for me? You know?

Katja: 00:36:08 Yeah.

Ryn: 00:36:08 And one of the things that we have for them is to not reenact that same way of relating. Right? Cause they’ll tell you there are plenty of holistic health practitioners, there are plenty of herbalists out there who interact with their clients in just the same way as a doctor does: you come in, they look at you, they ask you a few questions, they do some black box magic–

Katja: 00:36:33 Maybe a muscle test or something like that.

Ryn: 00:36:35 Yeah, there’s all kinds of different things and many of them I think are perfectly valid and some of them I think are not and that’s a conversation for another day. But they do whatever they do. But maybe they don’t really explain it to you while it’s going on. And then they say, all right, you sit there and I’m going to go mix your herbs. And they go mix them up and maybe you can’t even read the label or it doesn’t have the ingredients on it or it’s in a language you don’t know or who knows what. And then they say, alright, you take this everyday like that. And that’s what you do. I don’t want to reenact that. I don’t want people to be mystified and to say, I dunno, my herbalist told me it would fix my problem. I want them to say, yeah, I went and talked to this guy and it took like two hours, but he explained to me what seems to be going on and it kind of made sense with what I’ve been feeling and something I was thinking about anyway. And we came up with this whole plan and there’s food and there’s movement stuff and he gave me this bag of herbs and it has this plant and that plant in it and this one’s good for this and that one’s good for that. I would love it if my clients were able to do that when they get home. That’s what I’m working for.

Katja: 00:37:34 That’s our goal, right? With every client. That’s our goal. Right down to when they walk in and sit down and get comfy. I give them a clipboard and a pen like, hey, you’re going to want to take some notes.

Ryn: 00:37:46 You’re in class now, by the way. [laughter].

Katja: 00:37:48 Yeah! Yeah.

Ryn: 00:37:49 You may not have realized it, but…

Katja: 00:37:52 You’re not necessarily going to remember all this. Like you’re gonna want to take some notes and also please send me an email. Even if you did take a note and then you look at it two weeks later and you’re like, I have no idea what I meant by that. Well then ask, I will tell you again, because my goal is for you to not need me. My goal is for you to understand what’s going on when you feel that way and how you can make yourself more comfortable and make yourself feel better.

Ryn: 00:38:20 Yeah. So you know, as you’ve gathered, I think we believe that education is the solution to lots and lots of problems. And that’s both the content of it, but also again, how it’s delivered, right? The way that we approach the relationship or the conveyance information. Um, and so yeah, so we did that in our client sessions and we tried to do that here on our podcast too. And one of the things that I always do with clients is when we’re going to mix herbs, I say, all right, I’ve got a few ideas about plants but come with me out into this room with the apothecary in it and let’s look at all the herbs together. Cause I think better when I’ve got my friends with me. Then they’re like, okay. And then they come along. I’m like, all right, let’s see who wants to go home with you today. I’m like trying to personalize the herbs and make it clear that this is not like, ryn’s formula number seven. This is for you. So, I’ll talk them through it and I try to turn my inside voice outside so they can hear as much of my inner monologue as possible and be like, hm, yeah. Okay. So I want a relaxant, I want something that’s gonna both work on the guts and also on the nerves. And you know, you have some of that uprising stuff. You got some heartburn before. Yeah. Catnip would be good for that. I’ll grab the catnip I’ll say, here, check this out. Smell it. See what you think. Let me tell you a little bit about it. So that part takes at least as long as the interview, the information gathered.

Katja: 00:39:38 Mmm. But I think that’s so important because they really understand why the catnip is in that blend and they also get an opportunity to say, whoa, this smells gross. I don’t think I could drink this. Or, uh, actually I think maybe you didn’t quite understand because what you’re describing right now is not actually what I’m feeling. Maybe that herb is great, but what you just said it’s good for isn’t actually what I think I need. And that’s a really important thing to hear too. And to be like, oh, great. Okay. Hold on. Let’s talk that one through again.

Ryn: 00:40:15 And again, if you’ve been listening to our podcast for awhile, you can probably hear that a lot of the same thoughts and impulses and values that we’re expressing here were those that we had in our podcast about how to not be a guru, right? How to maintain humility as a person that somebody might want to put in a position of authority. So that was a lot focused around the way we teach, and try to get information out that way. But so many of the same considerations are there when I’m teaching one-on-one. When I’m doing a consultation, I don’t want them to put me in a position of ultimate authority. It’s okay if they’re like, yeah, you know more about herbs than I do. That’s just a fact, that’s not a fundamental shift in the way we interact with each other.

Also, We are Not Pharmacists

Katja: 00:40:57 No. Because any way they know a whole lot more about their body than you do or than I do. So you know what, Hey, you know a lot about your body and I know a lot about plants. Let’s get together, let’s collaborate and see what we can come up with to make your body strong, healthy, and feel great. You know, there’s a couple of things that I wanted to kind of go back to because we sort of had a thing and then we kind of went past it in a different direction and I just wanted to come back around to them. One of them was when you were talking about prescription drugs and that doctor who was like, don’t use insulin. Obviously I think anybody listening to that would say, holy cow, you should never say that to anybody. Like if you need insulin, oh my goodness. Of course you need insulin. But I want to really emphasize that as herbalists, it’s not okay for us to say that about any drug. Because that would be practicing medicine. And also because we’re not pharmacists and we are not doctors and especially we’re not pharmacists. So if we have a concern about a particular drug maybe being poorly matched to a person, maybe they come in and they have a symptom set that they’re describing and they described the onset of that symptom set as matching up with a point in time when they started taking a particular prescription drug and we researched that and that symptom set matches the side effects for that drug. Then we might be inclined to say, well, you should stop taking that. But that’s a terrible idea because, first of all that would be practicing medicine. But it’s not just about covering your butt. It’s also a terrible idea because prescription drugs, pharmaceuticals, are complicated and sometimes you can’t just stop taking them and sometimes they’re doing something that you don’t know. And sometimes that’s something is important enough that it’s worth the negative side effects. There’s just a lot going on that as herbalists we are simply not trained to do. What we can do, and what’s totally appropriate is to say, you know, all of those things track with the side effects list of this particular pharmaceutical. And I think that it would be a great idea for you to tell your doctor that you are feeling these and let them know that you’re having these side effects and ask is there another drug that might do that job or is there a way that that those side effects could be dealt with? Or talk to your pharmacist. Maybe there’s some drug consolidation that needs to happen or something like that. That is not something that we as herbalists can do, but we can say, you know, I think you shouldn’t keep quiet about that. I think that you should let your doctors and your pharmacist know about that because I think there might be action they can take. And let’s say that one of those symptoms they were experiencing was dry mouth for example. Well, okay. You know, dry mouth is something that I can work with in a palliative manner. I definitely can help that feel better.I can work with marshmallow, a cold infusion of marshmallow or a cold infusion of Linden to help with those dry mouth feelings so that they’ll be more comfortable until they can work it out with their medical practitioner. If it turns out that they really do require that drug and there’s nothing be done about it, well then I’m really grateful that I can address that dry mouth symptom and help them feel more comfortable. I feel great about that. I just want to just super clarify that it’s not just, oh goodness, I would never tell somebody not to take insulin. But like any drug, we don’t tell people not to take it or you should just stop taking it or any of those things cause that that’s not okay. It’s not okay. And it’s also not okay. You know?

Ryn: 00:44:58 Yeah, yeah. So, you know, I had mentioned earlier that I’ve looked at a few different medical practice acts from different states. One of them, the one for West Virginia, kinda brought something home for me that was feeding into a lot of these considerations. And this is again about that idea about rights and responsibilities being two sides of the same coin. In the the West Virginia Medical Practice Act, there are certain things that are defined as privileges and they are there to be distinguished from what are natural rights of individuals. They have a lot of the similar kind of ideas about specific terms and acts and things like that, as what I was describing earlier. But just that concept that if you want to do these specific things, that’s a privilege and you know, you need to apply for it and meet these criteria and this and that. But things other than that, those are natural rights of individuals. Based on if you’re working the way we’ve been describing and approaching the relationship that way, herbalism is then going to be a natural right. It’s going to be something that no one can take away from you because it’s not, well, basically it’s not dangerous enough that we need to make a license about it.

Katja: 00:46:21 Well, it’s like nobody can take away from you the right to eat broccoli if you choose to, you know. Like, yeah, you’re allowed to eat broccoli. Go right ahead. That’s fine.

Ryn: 00:46:29 You’re allowed to say to somebody, you know it might be a good idea for your health if you ate more Broccoli. Yeah. That’s okay. You can say that.

Katja: 00:46:40 It’s not okay to say Broccoli will cure your diabetes.

Ryn: 00:46:43 Right.

Katja: 00:46:44 Don’t do that. It won’t. It would probably be a great idea for somebody with diabetes to eat more vegetables. Yeah, sure. But it’s not going to cure their diabetes, so we won’t say that.

Ryn: 00:46:56 Yeah. This is also connected to the licensure aspect. You know how we say every week, no state or federal authority licenses herbalists in the US. Well, there are a lot of reasons for that. One of them is because we license things that are dangerous, like performing surgery or giving somebody prescription drugs or driving a car because you can kill people with all of those things. And I always say it that way because I like to put performing surgery and driving a car on the same field for people both because I’m one of them we think of as extremely dangerous and to take many, many years of training to do it safely and effectively. And the other one kills more people than that every day. Just for like setting the playing field here, herbalism does not kill nearly as many people as driving cars or performing surgery or giving people drugs for that matter, you know? As Paul Bergner reminded this is not a “whoever kills the fewest people wins” kind of a game.

Katja: 00:47:55 I just love that. Yeah.

Ryn: 00:47:57 So while herbalists on the whole can take pride in the fact that we don’t kill as many people as conventional medicine does, that’s no reason to rest on your laurels. I think it is things like this that are baked into a lot of the traditional ways of interacting with somebody as an herbalist and as somebody going to see the herbalist. A lot of these are values that are taught or conveyed from teacher to student or from herbalist to apprentice. It’s important in our modern world to make them explicit and to make them explicit both for yourself and for the legal entities that you may or may not encounter in the course of your career and probably most importantly for the people who are coming to see you or to learn from you.

Katja: 00:48:48 I think another reason to make that clear is that there is some confusion, especially as this crosses over into the herbalist’s side of things as opposed to the the client side of things is that there is some confusion around “I want to be a certified herbalist”. Well, there is no such thing. There are many schools who will tell you that if you take their class, you will be a certified herbalist, but you in fact will not be because there is no certifying body in the United States. There isn’t a body that licenses anything. So you will have a certificate from your school and that certificate will be as valid as the school is and as valid as the work that you put into it. But it is not a legal thing. It’s not a certification. The word certification, maybe it’s been diluted a little bit, but that implies there is some authority who has conveyed that upon you. That feels really important to me. Not only that as an herbalism school, we are not misleading our students by telling them that they’re going to be certified herbalists. But then also as herbal practitioners that we are not misleading our clients by telling them that we are certified herbalists. Because that gets really close to starting to sound like you’re licensed. And that gets close to starting to sound like you’re practicing medicine and that can be really problematic. So that’s another reason to bring that up. And while I’m on that little tangent, I want to also say that as herbalists, it is a big responsibility on us as unlicensed practitioners in this country to take that tremendously seriously and to safeguard that status by not being reckless, by making sure that we are thoroughly educated and that we don’t jump into clinical practice. And I don’t want somebody to be afraid to be a clinical herbalist, but I also want people to take it super seriously and understand that screwing it up could screw it up for all of us and that we have a responsibility as a community of herbalists to just make sure that we are practicing at a high level of integrity.

Ryn: 00:51:14 And that includes a high level of humility and a recognition of your reasonable scope that you can work in safely and where are the edges of that and how will I know when I’m brushing up against them? And how will I proceed when that occurs? It’s not like this has to be complicated or anything. No. In most cases it’s just to be clear with the person, you know what, that’s outside my experience. That’s outside my comfort zone. Here are the places I think you should go for further assessment or further support.

Katja: 00:51:48 Yes, here’s a list of referrals.

Ryn: 00:51:50 And that could be because there’s a red flag symptom and oh boy, that’s a dangerous place and you better go and get a medical workup. Okay. Sometimes that happens. I’d say in my practice more frequently it’s been, wow, you have some really serious emotional needs that are not being met and you need some support. You need maybe some guidance about how to work through that or how to ask for what you need. I’m not a therapist. I’m not trained in all the ways of navigating that world. I know somebody who’s really, really great at it. I’d like to give you a referral

Katja: 00:52:26 Or you can see somebody else. But if you’re looking for a starting point, here’s a name.

Ryn: 00:52:33 Yeah, yeah. Which thank you for that, because I also wanted to comment a little bit on dispensing herbs to people who come and just a sort of brief diversion into herbs in the marketplace and things like that. Um, but did you get to finish that thought earlier or were you, ..?

Katja: 00:52:50 I think that I just wanted to say that we take our education really seriously. Sometimes I hear people say something like, well, I really need some extra income, so I want to start seeing clients. No, that’s not how that works.

Ryn: 00:53:12 No, no. Not on any level really, because this is not…[laughter]

Katja: 00:53:14 Yeah, right, right. This is not a get rich quick scheme. Like it’s definitely a place where it can be a profession, but it is not a rich quick profession at all. We always try to be very aware and to, if we are feeling scared about money for example, not to put our herbalism in that same bucket to try to meet those needs. And not require our herbalism to support us more than we are able to, or more than the integrity of our education would allow. Which does not mean that we cannot continue to educate ourselves in order to grow into a wider scope of practice. We definitely can and should do that. But if you get a part time job, that doesn’t mean you’re not an herbalist anymore. You are. If you are working with the plants and you are studying and you are learning,you’re an herbalist. You don’t have to only support yourself with money from seeing clients and not have to do any other work to call yourself an herbalist. In fact, for most of human history, nobody got all of their money through one source. You know, like it was normal to get a little money here, get a little money there. I support myself some this way too.

Ryn: 00:54:46 Some of that money is in the form of eggs.

Katja: 00:54:48 [laughter]Yes, yes. But don’t feel like, if my clinical practice doesn’t support me, then I guess I’m not a good herbalist or I need financial support and so I have to stretch my clinical practice further than I feel comfortable with. I think what I’m trying to say is that the number one thing that we start our students off with in the second year when they start to learn their clinical skills is an exercise that every morning they should look in the mirror and just practice saying, I don’t know. You know, I don’t know. I haven’t experienced that yet. You know, I haven’t encountered this. I’m going to do some research for you and get back to you. Oh, hey, I don’t actually know. Why don’t we find out who could help you with that? You know, just practice all the ways you can of saying, I don’t know, until it just rolls off your tongue so comfortably and does not feel like an indictment of your skill. We’re not supposed to know everything. It’s okay if there are things you don’t know, you are not a bad herbalist. That’s just ta thing you don’t know yet.

Ryn: 00:56:01 So my tangential thoughts were about, I don’t have people come in and give them the impression that I have access to the secret herbs and they have to get them all from me.

Katja: 00:56:16 Yeah, that’s wicked important.

Ryn: 00:56:18 This is a problem with many kinds of alternative health practice,where both the people who are giving the-what we would consider education-are also the ones who are perhaps marketing and selling a specific product. And both of those forces tend to shape each other.

Katja: 00:56:36 And that specific product might also be expensive.

Ryn: 00:56:40 Yeah. So, we do send people away with plant remedies. We like to do that. We like somebody to be able to walk out of an in-person session with something physical that they can hold and it’s, you know, something that they helped to prepare or they at least observed as we prepared it. it’s like a memento of that education and that learning experience. But I’m clear with people. You don’t have to get these herbs from me. I can tell you other places to get them from. Especially down the line, we… a little bit, don’t make it super easy for people to come back and get herbs from us.

Katja: 00:57:17 No, I don’t want to blend tea for people. I will blend one bag to teach them how to do it and if that needs an adjustment or something like that, fine. Okay. But I am not your tea dispenser. I want people to feel very comfortable knowing where they can get herbs and I’m happy to teach them where they can get herbs. I’ll teach them where I get the herbs and I’m going to teach them how do they know if it was good quality or not. And if they call and say, hey, that place is out. Do you know of another place? I’ll help them find one. But I don’t want somebody to call me up and say, Hey, I’m outta tea I need a refill. Because again, that’s dependency and I don’t want somebody to be dependent on me. And I also don’t make a profit on plants.

Ryn: 00:58:01 Yeah. Well, that’s true.

Katja: 00:58:03 That often is referred to as “tell n’ sell”. And so we don’t want to be in that place. We provide education. And so we don’t want to also provide products that are maybe unfamiliar or new to a person and they feel like they’re dependent on us to get that product. We want them to see that this is available in many places. I will give you a list and I will tell you which one I think is cheapest, and where I order mine and all that stuff.

Ryn: 00:58:34 Yeah. So that’s important to us. It’s sort of like a mirror image or I don’t know, a doppelganger of an experience lots of people have when they’re in a health food shop or a supplement aisle or something and they’re looking at all these herbal products and they’re trying to figure out which one is right for them. There are just like a bunch of legal and regulatory and corporate forces that had made that really difficult. And so we think a lot about how the solution to a lot of problems in what I’ll call the herbal industry as separate from herbal practice come out of a lack of education and people just not being familiar either with the underlying ways to approach herbs and herbalism and see how it all fits together with your body. Let alone the specific plants.

Katja: 00:59:38 Yeah. And then let alone assessing whether one product is better than another. But if I feel perfectly comfortable walking into a store that sells a bunch of different types of products and assessing them and deciding which one looks best to me based on factors, then I can also teach someone to feel comfort in that way as well. And it may not happen all in one visit, but I would rather share that knowledge than have them feel like they have to come back to me to get something.

Ryn: 01:00:14 So all of this is probably sounding like we demand a lot from our clients and in large part that’s true. You know, also we can say that when somebody comes in and they’re completely exhausted and they have still got two jobs and three kids and all this stuff to juggle, it’s not like we’re going to sit there and say, you have to do the work or I’m not going to help you out. We’ll like say, okay, here’s something that gets you started. Try this, see how it feels. I won’t go into the phytochemistry of all of the plants in your formula today. Maybe next time when you’ve rested a bit. Hopefully this sleep blend will help with that, you know?

Katja: 01:00:52 well and meet people where they are in the depth that the person wants it, you know? And also I think that, I’m not sure it’s quite accurate to say that we demand a lot from our clients. I think it’s more accurate to say that we desire a lot for our clients.

Ryn: 01:01:08 I like that.

Katja: 01:01:09 I want to see wonderful things happen for them. I want them to feel good in their body. I want them to be able to do more, you know. To go for a walk every day and maybe they weren’t able to do that before or whatever that thing happens to be. I want them to meet their goals and just to feel vibrant and strong in their day. Whatever is right for their body. And in order to do that, they’re going to need some knowledge. I think that so many of the skills that we teach are things that maybe used to be somewhat more common knowledge or maybe at least more widely spread. But that as we have become more civilized or whatever it is that we call this, more technologically dependent, I don’t even know. Definitely more busy. We have also lost connection with some basic skills that used to be more common. Even basic things like when I was a kid, I can remember, you know, no, you can’t have a snack, you’ll spoil your dinner. That itself isn’t really common knowledge anymore. Now we snack all the time, but there’s a lot of metabolic reasons that actually a snack might not be the best idea. So even some of that basic stuff that maybe we heard it once or twice, but it’s like there’s so much to do and there’s so much information and there’s so much coming in and there’s so little time. And so I really desire for my clients that we can not only find an herb that helps them feel good, but also that we can find some creative ways to restructure their life so that it supports their goals and supports their health better than what it does right now.

Ryn: 01:03:13 Yeah. And we want that for you too, wonderful podcast listeners.

Katja: 01:03:17 We do!

Ryn: 01:03:17 So if sometimes you’re there and you’re wondering to yourself, when are they just going to tell me the herbs to take for that problem, then this is why we are often a little roundabout or are very excited to dig into all of the exceptions or the things that would change our idea or shift it a little bit because those are an irreducible part of this practice. And so we try to keep that right up at the front of our vision, regardless of what it is we’re doing as herbalists today, whether we’re teaching or seeing clients or recording a podcast or filming a video course or anything else like that. So we hope that these ideas resonate with you. We’d love to hear feedback on any of these experiences of yours that are similar to some of the problems we’re describing or experiences of yours that were completely the opposite of that or were completely wonderful and restored your faith in whoever.

Katja: 01:04:16 Yeah. You know, the bottom line is that none of us has all the answers. And I would rather collaborate with a team of people. I’d rather collaborate with you. I’d rather collaborate with the broadest spectrum of the people supporting you as possible because we all have a part to play, you know? Like, I love it when I get to work on an integrated team of health care providers because it’s so interesting and also gratifying to see how all these things can work together and how we all as practitioners of different modalities can also intentionally work together to stay within our scope, but also broaden the spectrum of what we can help someone with because we have such a broad spectrum of skills and experiences. So, whether that is just me and someone else in a room and the two of us together have a lot more experience, a lot more knowledge, and we can come up with some really great and applicable suggestions to try or whether this is, I’m really happy to collaborate with somebody’s medical provider and we will do different things and we will support each other in each other’s work, whatever that looks like. I just don’t want to be standing here letting anybody think that I think I’ve got all the answers cause I don’t.

Ryn: 01:05:49 So, here we discuss things on the Internet and you’ve got to remember that the final decision is always yours.

Katja: 01:05:59 Yeah, don’t take our word for it.

Ryn: 01:06:01 Yeah.

Katja: 01:06:02 Maybe get motivated to try something and then try it out. But I dunno. You still got to see if it works for you.

Ryn: 01:06:08 You do, yeah. So why don’t you go and do some of that and we’ll be back here next week and we will talk some straight up herbalism next time. We’ll have lots of plants.[outro music plays].

Katja: 01:06:22 All plants all the time.

Ryn: 01:06:24 All right, folks. Thank you for listening. I’ll talk to you again. Bye.


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