podcast

Podcast 136: Accessible Herbalism for Digestive Discomforts

Digestive issues are extremely common, and are one of the leading causes of missed work and reduced quality of life. The good news is, herbs can help! There’s much relief to be found in the study of herbalism for digestive discomforts. For each individual person, digestive issues can manifest a little differently, even if the…

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Podcast 135: Accessible Herbalism for Wound Care

Everyone gets hurt sometimes. Knowing how to take care of injuries at home is an excellent skill to have. You can prevent a minor injury from becoming something serious with a few simple steps: stop the bleeding, clean & disinfect, then help the healing process. Bringing in herbalism for wound care support is going to…

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Podcast 134: Accessible Herbalism for Sleep

We work with herbs for sleep improvement purposes very frequently, because sleep is so critical to good health. During sleep, your body works through a to-do list, including: detoxification, hormone ‘balancing’, wound healing, muscle growth, immune surveillance, fat burning, clearing inflammation, cleaning wastes from the brain, and even mood regulation! Lots of things in the…

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Podcast 133: Accessible Herbalism for Pain Management

“Pain is a signal to change your behavior.” This motto comes from our friend the herbalist Tammi Sweet, and perfectly sums up the holistic approach to working with herbs for pain. Something’s gotta change! In this episode we’re particularly focusing on recurring & chronic pain, but these strategies help acute pain as well. What we…

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Podcast 132: Accessible Herbalism for Weight Management

The holistic approach to herbalism for weight management doesn’t start with a search for “fat-burning herbs”. Instead, we focus on building health first & foremost. As we build good health, losing weight becomes easier and more permanent. In this episode we’ll explain why it’s hard to lose weight – there’s an evolutionary, physiological basis for…

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Podcast 131: Accessible Herbalism for Edema

Edema is stuck fluid: stagnant blood and lymph that isn’t flowing the way it should be. Puffy ankles and swollen fingers are just two ways this might show up for someone. It’s not just cosmetic – stagnations like this impair wound healing and healthy cellular function, and can put strain on the heart and kidneys.…

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Podcast 130: Accessible Herbalism for Diabetes

Diabetes is very common and can lead to a number of serious health issues. Holistic methods can improve diabetes by correcting what’s wrong at the source: too much sugar in the blood. These methods will include making changes to the diet – reducing sugar and refined carbs, getting more vegetables – as well as building…

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Podcast 129: Accessible Herbalism for High Blood Pressure & High Cholesterol

High blood pressure and high cholesterol are two very common cardiovascular issues that you can safely improve with herbs. You can reduce your risk and improve your resilience with inexpensive medicinal plants and foods. These safe, abundant herbs can help release stress-induced tension, reduce fluid retention, and protect against the inner damage that drives cholesterol…

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Podcast 128: Herbalism & Mutual Aid

What do we want to build in place of the unjust systems we are living in? Everyone plays a role in deciding. Let’s do it consciously. The role of herbalists and of herbalism in mutual aid is to share knowledge, skills, and materials – and there are lots of ways to do it. Community care…

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Podcast 127: Herbs for Trauma Recovery & Resistance

America is blanketed in righteous protests against police brutality and impunity. This is necessary. In the course of this work many people are being traumatized, whether through direct violence or by observing violence inflicted on their friends, comrades, and communities. Herbs can’t solve systemic racism, but they can support recovery and build resistance. We can…

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Podcast 126: The Fifth Pillar Is Community

Our model of the primary determinants of health is the Four Pillars: food, sleep, stress, and movement. These things are in our individual control – or at least, that’s how we think of them and talk about them, most of the time. But the truth is, there’s a fifth pillar, and it can directly impact…

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Podcast 125: This Is Not The Practice Of Medicine

The pharmaceutical model is the dominant paradigm for medicine in our culture. For those of us who grew up in this culture, it shapes our expectations of what medicine is and how medicine works. Everyone is susceptible to this, including herbalists and students of herbalism. Even if, in the front of our minds, we recognize…

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Podcast 124: A Holistic Herbal Tick Bite Protocol

Finding a tick embedded in your skin is distressing, even without the spectre of Lyme disease and other tick-borne pathogens. But if you find one after your next hike in the woods, don’t panic! A simple herbal tick bite protocol like the one we outline in this episode can put your mind at ease and…

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Podcast 123: Four Herbs for Moms

Happy mother’s day, 2020! The truth is, any herb could be an herb for moms, because not all moms are alike, in their needs or their preferences. These four, though – linden, dandelion, yarrow, and violet – are really worth knowing and sharing with the mothers in your life. These plants are abundant, so you…

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Podcast 122: Where Do We Go From Here, Corona?

The battle’s done, and we kind-of won… Well, actually, the battle’s not entirely done either. But things are certainly shifting into a different mode. So, here are our top five everyday things you can do to stay healthy as this pandemic shifts into a new phase. Eat good food. Get more sleep. Move your body.…

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Podcast 121: Six Herbs for COVID Anxiety

The pandemic has got all of us in a heightened state of alert. The news changes fast, stories come and go before we can fully process them, and every day there’s another set of statistics that are hard to mentally translate into real human lives. It’s stressful. Even if we’re not actively doomscrolling through Twitter,…

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Podcast 120: How To Practice Herbalism Every Day

Last week we urged you to look at learning herbalism like learning a language or instrument – something that requires daily practice. This week, we’re sharing some specific practices you can do to build your herbal skills on a daily basis! You can take lessons in herbalism, and study to learn – but the key…

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Podcast 119: Learn Herbalism Like an Instrument or Language

Herbalism is experiential: you have to DO it to KNOW it. It’s like learning to play a musical instrument – you’re going to sound bad at first! That’s necessary. If you refuse to play anything that isn’t perfect, you’ll never play anything. In herbalism, if you wait until you know everything there is to know,…

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Podcast 118: Herbal Home Nursing Basics

It’s not just coronavirus, there’s a lot going on right now! Between the usual circulating strains of flu, some spring colds, and the stirrings of allergy season, plenty of folks are feeling rough. But it’s up to all of us to reduce strain on the medical system right now, so it’s more important than ever…

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Podcast 117: A Week In The Life Of Two Herbalists

Whew! There’s a lot going on right now. Between coronavirus, the election cycle, and the approach of spring, we’ve been extra busy and under more stress than usual. This week we wanted to share with you some of the herbs we’ve been relying on to get through. It’s a bit of a smorgasbord! First up,…

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Podcast 116: Herbs for Coronavirus Preparedness

The new pandemic coronavirus, COVID-19, is on everyone’s minds lately. As herbalists, we’ve been asked a lot about our thoughts on working with herbs for coronavirus preparedness, so that’s our topic today! First, we try to understand the virus and some facts about the illness it causes. How does it compare to “normal” flu, to…

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Podcast 115: Rebecca Altman & The Wonder Sessions

Join us for a discussion with our friend Rebecca Altman about the importance of self-awareness in the practice of herbalism – but also an exploration of vulnerability and in rebuilding our connection to the natural world. Some of the things we discuss are what it means to take responsibility for our health, how to build…

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Podcast 114: Formulating Cocktail Bitters for Flavor & Action

This week we took a trip to New York City, because we were invited to teach a workshop on formulating cocktail bitters for our friends at Kindred, a restaurant in the East Village. Our social media posts about it were popular, with lots of commenters saying that they would love to learn how to make…

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Podcast 113: Grow Your Own Herbs

It might seem difficult to grow your own herbs, but like so many things in herbalism, it’s all about being open to experimentation and maintaining good observation. And for the herbalist, there are great reasons to do it! Not only will you be sourcing your herbs as local as it gets, you’ll learn a lot…

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Podcast 112: Working With Herbs For Chronic Pain

Pain is complex. Many factors can contribute to pain, or worsen it, including the food we eat, the sleep we do or don’t get, and the stresses we experience in our lives. When pain is chronic, we need to think outside the “painkiller” box and think more broadly. This is also the best method of…

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Podcast 111: Handmade Herbal Aphrodisiacs for Valentine’s Day Delight

There are a lot of myths about herbal aphrodisiacs – they don’t make you into an irresistible sex monster, let’s get that out of the way right up front! But they do help you release tension that can distract you from your partner or from the present moment. And they do help you feel more…

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Podcast 110: New Moon Down Time

It’s really hard to really take a break these days – with smartphones and connected devices everywhere, the pressure to use our time “productively” is pervasive. But that doesn’t mean humans can actually keep up that pace, and it has all kinds of health effects to try! So this year one thing that we’re doing…

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Podcast 109: Sustainability for Herbalists

There are many facets to sustainability for herbalists to consider, from maintaining your personal energy reserves to establishing sustainable working conditions for the workers who bring herbs to us.  Today we’re focusing on direct sustainability of the plants themselves. How can we make sure that, as interest in herbalism and demand for herbs grows, we’re…

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Podcast 108: Herbs to Supercharge Bone Broth

It’s 2020, we don’t need to convince you that bone broth is good for you! But in case you’ve been living under a rock, bone broth is awesome for your digestive health, immune defenses, musculoskeletal resilience, and plenty more besides. So all on its own, it’s great – but you can add herbs to supercharge…

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Podcast 107: Herbs for Whole30: Help Reduce Cravings, Improve Digestion, & Boost Nutrition

The Whole30 is one of our favorite diet plans – or, as we prefer to call them, food experiments! It’s a great way to reset your eating habits, change your relationship with food and cooking, and discover your own personal food intolerances or sensitivities. As herbalists, we’ve seen it accomplish amazing things for our clients…

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Podcast 106: Real Life Resolutions

What do you want to bring into the new year with you? Our first piece of advice is to be specific with your intention – envision how this change will happen in your own real day-to-day life, in detail. This helps you make sure it really happens! Intention is key also in transforming our relationship…

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Podcast 105: Holistic Herbalism for Anxiety

Anxiety is a feeling of exposure, a feeling that one is without protection. The much-maligned ‘safe space’ is in fact a necessity for all humans. (Those who malign it tend to be speaking from a place of unchallenged safety.) But how to create that for yourself, in an environment that feels hostile? Herbs can help,…

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Podcast 104: Hawthorn

The hawthorns are some of our most generous and protective herbs. Hathorn offers abundant berries, rich with heart-supporting medicine – but its thorns mean you can’t just come and take everything in one swipe. Hawthorn demands a careful and respectful approach, and it can bring all these qualities to our physical bodies and – our…

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Podcast 103: Maybe You Don’t Have To

It’s easy to get caught up in your to-do list and everything you “have to” do. Sometimes, it’s ok to not. This week we’re modeling that behavior, with a micro-cast just to prove we mean it! We’ll be back next week with an episode about hawthorn and getting through difficult times. Until then, take care…

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Podcast 102: How To Learn A New Herb

As a brand new student of herbalism, you might think there are a lot of herbs to learn. As an experienced herbalist with decades of practice under your belt, you’ll DEFINITELY KNOW there are A LOT OF HERBS to learn!! That’s one of the things we like best about herbalism – there’s always more to…

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Podcast 101: How Herbs Are Different From Drugs

Herbs differ from pharmaceuticals in important ways. Understanding how they’re different helps us make better choices about what to take, and how to take it, to get the effect we’re looking for. It also helps us avoid common misunderstandings about herbs and herbalism – like thinking that the effect of an herb can be reduced…

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Podcast 100: The Definitive Guide to Herbalism

Wouldn’t it be nice if there were one book you could read, one teacher you could study with, one website you could scroll through – that would tell you everything you need to know about herbalism? Sometimes it seems like there ought to be a definitive guide to herbalism – and for our 100th episode,…

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Podcast 099: Don’t Let The Perfect Be The Enemy Of The Good

Our ideas about health are often context-dependent, and clinging too tightly to rules about what is “good” and “bad” can really get us into trouble when context changes. It can also get in the way of communicating and sharing knowledge with people who live in contexts that are different from our own. Like many herbalists,…

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Podcast 098: Holistic Strategies & Herbs for Joint Pain

Yes, there are herbs for joint pain, and they really work! But when we’re working with this problem, we like to pile on – lots of herbs (in lots of ways), plus some changes to the diet, plus gentle movement, plus better sleep & stres management. This is what holistic herbalism looks like: combining strategies…

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Podcast 097: Everything Will Be Fine: A Simple Herbal Stress Remedy

Everyone gets stressed out sometimes. So if you’re among “everyone”, you might like this herbal stress remedy formula! It’s one of our favorites and we turn to it again and again. Like all our formulas, this one can be customized to meet your own needs & personal taste. In this episode we describe what each…

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Podcast 096: Small Healthy Changes Help You Make Big Ones

Change is hard. It’s hard for everyone, not just you! Acknowledging this is important, whether you’re trying to make a change in your own life or guide others through that process. Since making change is at the heart of holistic herbalism, finding ways to make it easier is critical to success. Sometimes, the best catalyst…

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Podcast 095: Herbs For Physical Challenges (What Ryn Took To MovNat Level 3)

Earlier this month, Ryn attended a Level 3 certification event for MovNat – a 4-day course/test/immersion in natural movement. It was quite the challenge! On this week’s episode, we talk about all the herbs he took to prepare beforehand and the ones he brought along to help him get through. If you want to work…

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Podcast 094: Creating A Culture of Support

Good health takes effort. It doesn’t just happen, and our cultural norms definitely don’t make it easy. You have to plan for it! But it can feel difficult to do all that planning on your own, and you know what they say about the best-laid plans… What’s needed here is a culture of support for…

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Podcast 093: Herbs for Athlete’s Foot

The itchy, inflamed, sensitive presentation of a fungal skin infection is something no one wants. These kinds of infections can be difficult to resolve whether you’re trying with herbs or with pharmaceutical agents, but don’t give up! With a few pointers and a solid plan, you can be successful working with herbs for athlete’s foot.…

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Podcast 092: How We Make Our Winter Elixir

This winter elixir is our #1 cold & flu remedy! We make a big batch every year around this time, when most of the plants that go into it are fresh and ready to harvest. They need about a month to extract fully into the elixir, so we can’t wait until we’re already sick to…

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Podcast 091: Nicole Rose & The Prisoner’s Herbal

Creating this community garden, and teaching families in your area how to grow food and look out for each other – that is abolition. We’re humanizing people again, and working for community health and ecological health, and all of those things are completely opposite to what the prison-industrial complex is trying to do. So in…

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Podcast 090: 3 Medicinal Invasive Plants

Where does loosestrife belong? Is barberry a badberry? And what’s with all the knotweed everywhere?! Most folks will tell you it’s simple: “These are invasive plants. They’re bullies, who take over an area and crowd out “native” plants! They need to be pulled out, root and branch! No use for ’em – not a good…

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Podcast 089: Herbs for Healthy Skin Care

Your skin is your largest organ, and it’s your presentation to the world – so it’s important to take care of it! It’s not just vanity. For most purposes, a simple daily routine will do the job. In this episode Katja shares her own personal daily routine, and then we discuss how to work with…

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Podcast 088: Sweet Herbs & Their Medicines

Sweet herbs aren’t only flavoring agents – there’s real medicine in there. When an herb has a sweet flavor, that gives you information about the way it will affect the body. These herbs tend to be moistening, building, and restorative. They’re great for correcting dry, atrophied, or depleted states of health, whether those are constitutional…

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Podcast 087: Herbal Awareness Rituals for Everyone

This week we’re talking about something a bit different for us. If you’re a regular listener, you know we’re very interested in science and in the historical & traditional ways of working with plants. But there’s a side of plant medicine we don’t talk about too often, and that’s the spiritual & ritual side. The…

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Podcast 086: notCoffee – Katja’s Decaf Herbal Coffee Replacement

Coffee is surely America’s favorite herb. So many people rely on it as part of their morning ritual, and it’s easy to see why! The aroma, the flavor, the stimulation – there’s a lot to like. But what if caffeine gives you the jitters, or rumbly guts? You can go with simple decaf, but even…

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Podcast 085: Lymphatic Herbs

The lymphatic system is criminally underestimated! It’s intimately tied to the function of your circulatory system, your digestive function, your immune responsiveness – pretty much everything. Conventional medicine doesn’t have much to offer in the way of pharmaceuticals to alter lymphatic activity, but fortunately there are a number of excellent lymphatic herbs that can do…

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Podcast 084: Herbal Smoking Blends & Herbs To Quit Smoking

An herbal smoking blend may not sound like your cup of tea – and it isn’t! – but it’s still an effective method of working with medicinal plants. When smoked, herbs have rapid effects on the lungs and the central nervous system, including antimicrobial, astringent, relaxant, and nervine or anxiety-reducing activities. This traditional practice is…

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Podcast 083: Our Wedding Herbs

If you’re an herbalist and you marry an herbalist, well, you’re going to need some special wedding herbs! We sure did. We loved the idea (and the herbs themselves) so much, we got them tattooed on us right after our honeymoon! Not all herbalism is about what you drink & “take”! In this episode we’re…

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Podcast 082: Common Herbs and Cancer

Cancer is not as rare as we once thought. Recent research has discovered that even healthy cells can contain potentially cancerous mutations, and that this is a normal occurrence in healthy individuals. As holistic herbalists, this conclusion doesn’t actually surprise us much! We’ve long taught that precancerous changes in cells are a normal part of…

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Podcast 081: Friends of Nettle (Herbal Formulas in Pairs)

Boston’s homegrown local herb conference, Herbstalk, is next weekend, and the plant of the year is stinging nettle! In honor of this, we wanted to make an episode focusing on this keystone plant. In this episode we share some of our favorite ways to make simple nettle herbal formulas, starting by pairing it with a…

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Podcast 080: The Role of Herbs In Heroic Medical Interventions

When we talk about “heroic” medical interventions, we mean the high-potency, high-risk (and potentially high-reward) tools that define conventional medicine. Pharmaceuticals, surgeries, cutting-edge experimental procedures – that kind of thing. While these kinds of treatments tend to get all the credit, they depend for a large part of their success on unglamorous, workaday support. A…

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Podcast 079: Motherwort for Mother’s Day!

Mother’s day can mean different things for different people, but whatever your situation is, Motherwort can be a supportive friend. Physiologically its effects are to soothe and relax the heart and arteries, but this crosses over into mental and emotional effects too. Those are what we find most interesting in connection between the herb and…

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Podcast 078: DIY Herbal Spring Cleaning Products

When it comes to chemical-free cleaning, there’s a lot of good stuff out there – but it can get pricey. And there’s a lot of “greenwashed” stuff, too – products that look “natural”, but really aren’t. But the good news is, you can make your own herbal spring cleaning products, and they’re not only effective,…

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Podcast 077: Urban Wildcrafting Ethics & Guidelines

It’s springtime! The plants are popping up everywhere in their colorful displays. This time of year, we always start to get more questions about wildcrafting and foraging, so we wanted to share some thoughts on the subject in this episode. Living in a city can make gathering your own plants seem more difficult, and there…

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Podcast 076: Herbs to Control Sugar Cravings

Is Easter really the best time to give up sugar? Well, given that there’s always another holiday around the corner, there’s never really an objectively better or worse time to try it. So why not try it now? You don’t have to do it alone – herbs can help! In this episode we’ll talk about…

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Podcast 075: Foundational Health Strategies & Evolution’s Expected Inputs

Everyone is different, and healthcare should be individualized for each person – especially when it comes to herbalism! But, on the other hand, people are also quite alike in many ways, and it turns out that there is in fact a general approach to building health. That’s what this episode is about: foundational health strategies…

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Podcast 074: Herbal Energetics: Tissue States

When choosing herbs for a health issue, herbalists like us use a system of organization called energetics. In this week’s podcast, we have an excerpt from our Energetics & Holistic Practice course about a key component of herbal energetics: tissue states. This term refers to the quality and activity present in a given organ or…

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Podcast 073: Herbs for Psoriasis

Psoriasis is a chronic, autoimmune inflammatory skin problem. Problems like this are complex, because they don’t hinge on a single genetic anomaly or chemical imbalance in the body. This makes them difficult for conventional medicine to solve, but holistic healing methods are exactly what’s needed here! We can work through multiple interventions, including diet changes…

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Podcast 072: Rooted & Ready Alterative/Adaptogen Herbal Formula for Endurance, Resilience, & Detox

This is one of our favorite herbal formulas for endurance situations, whether that’s physical, mental, emotional, or all three. These herbs help build up your resilience, in part by improving your ability to clear the system of wastes and irritants. (Call it “detox”, the body’s daily action to process and eliminate such things.) Herbs can…

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Podcast 071: Herbs for Seasonal Allergies

It’s just about time for seasonal allergy … um, season … to begin here in Boston! Sniffy noses and red eyes are peeking around every corner. So let’s talk about some of our favorite herbs for seasonal allergies, and see if we can get you more comfortable outside. We lead with a brief discussion of…

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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…

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Podcast 069: How To Choose The Right Herbs For Sleep

Just going to the internet and searching for “herbs for sleep” isn’t very effective – how do you know the right one for you? First, you need to suss out why you can’t sleep – not all insomnia is created equal! In this podcast, we break sleep problems down into a few basic categories and…

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Podcast 068: Herbs for Stress-Induced Heartburn in Teens

I don’t know if you’re aware of this, but it’s stressful to be a teen! Sometimes, that stress shows up as heartburn. As herbalists, we can help out! Here’s a discussion of some of our favorite herbs for stress-induced heartburn in teens. Some are for directly addressing the burning pain and discomfort; others are for…

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Podcast 067: Two Herbalists Get The Flu

Yes, it’s true: even herbalists get the flu. Two in one house sometimes, even! Each of us gets it a little bit differently, as our constitutions are balanced differently. But at least we can take care of each other. Listen in and learn all our tricks for getting through Actual Flu with a little more…

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Podcast 066: Herbs for Psychological First Aid

It may not have occurred to you that “psychological first aid” is even a thing, let alone that there might be herbs for psychological first aid! But let us assure you, it is very real and very important, and herbs can play a leading role. When working as a street medic or first responder, you’ll…

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Podcast 065: How To Not Be A Guru

Things are complex, and there are many factors. But guru syndrome is bad for the teacher and for the student, both. And believe it or not, active measures are required if you want to know how to not be a guru. Because humans have these tendencies: as students, to seek a guru; as teachers, to…

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Podcast 064: Herbs for First Aid & Disaster Response

There are so many fantastic herbs for first aid purposes, it’s hard to name them all! But if we focus our thoughts specifically on a post-disaster situation, this helps us narrow it down. Even better, think about the most likely emergency situations that might arise where you live, and you can keep your kit nice…

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Podcast 063: Top 7 Herbs for Nutritionists and Dietitians

If you’re a practitioner of food-as-medicine and are interested in integrating herbs into your work – or just a health-seeker wondering if herbs can support dietary interventions – this is the episode for you! We present what we think are the seven best herbs for dietitians and nutritionists to learn about and to integrate into…

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Podcast 062: Herbal Hygge

Hoo-ga? Hue-guh? However you pronounce it, hygge is big right now! And it makes sense: this time of year, we could all use a bit more comfort, coziness, and cuddly contentment as we contemplate the context of our current collective consciousness! . . . Or, uh, just have a nice way to find some warmth…

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Podcast 061: Holistic Herbalism for Chronic Headaches & Migraines

This week Ryn & Katja share some thoughts on how to address chronic headaches – not just “getting rid of it” in the acute moment, but reducing the frequency & severity of your headaches across the board. This will require some changes to your habits around food, sleep, movement, and stress – but herbs are…

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Podcast 060: Herbal Resolutions

New Year’s Eve is right around the corner, and we, like many folks, are ready with our list of resolutions. Let’s all make them more about self-care and becoming who we want to be in the world, and less about guilt & shame! In this podcast we’ll give you some tips how to do that,…

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Podcast 059: Herbs & the Holidays: Solstice

Solstice is the quiet time, a moment of pause between the dying of the old and the rebirth of the new year. This week we share some meditations, stories, and traditions that shape the way we think about this time of year and its effects on our habits & our health. Listen in with a…

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Podcast 058: Herbs & the Holidays: Handling Food Allergies & Sensitivities

Holiday foods are delightful & delicious, but what if you’re allergic to some of the ingredients? Never fear! In this episode we’ll share some of our best tips & tricks for when gluten, dairy, or other allergens are a no-no. Whether making a simple substitution, or trying out something entirely new, we’ve got you covered.…

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Podcast 057: Herbs & the Holidays: Herbal Gift Ideas

Handmade herbal remedies and self-care items are a great solution to the conundrum of gift-giving. In this episode we’ll share three DIY herbal gift ideas that you can make at home and share with all your loved ones: herb-infused wines, coffee-pecan cocktail bitters, and an evergreen-scented sugar scrub. The gift of herbs shows you care…

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Podcast 056: Herbs & the Holidays: Medicinal Virtues of Culinary Herbs

This week we continue our exploration of herbal holiday traditions with a quick chat about some of the ways herbs turn up in holiday foods. Whether it’s a nice herbed roast, a ginger-enhanced cranberry sauce, or a paleo mulling-spice cookie (yep, we’ve got a recipe for those!), herbs add more than flavor to your season…

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Podcast 055: Herbs & the Holidays: Emotional Support

Today we’re kicking off a series of podcasts on herbs and the holidays! We begin with emotional support, because no matter how you feel about the holidays, those feelings are probably pretty big. In this episode we take an energetics-based approach to sorting out emotional categories and matching supportive herbs to them. Whether you’d like…

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Podcast 054: Cold & Flu Herbs (Beyond Elderberry Syrup & Thyme Steam)

Every time we talk about cold & flu herbs, we seem to start out with elderberry syrup and a good old thyme steam. Well, this time we’re going to talk about something different! Here are a few good friends to have on hand as we move into cold & flu season. Herbs discussed include white…

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Podcast 053: The Apothekers

This week our episode is an interview with Shari & Russ Apotheker of Apotheker’s Kitchen, makers of fine honey-sweetened confections and longtime friends of ours. We visited them at their homestead in Way Up There, VT, to chat about their work and how it’s changed over the years. Along the way we talked about a…

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Podcast 052: Intentional Inconvenience, Rhodiola Rhapsody, Stimulants for Midwives, & “Poisonous Mints”

This is our one-year anniversary episode! This week we cover a lot of ground. Katja talks about ways adding a little inconvenience to your home environment helps encourage you to move more. She also talks about how she came around to appreciating rhodiola as an herb on our honeymoon to Iceland, and offers some non-caffeine-containing…

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Podcast 051: Exam Time!

Every year, our Advanced Studies Program ends with a weekend-long exam. There’s a written portion with short answers, essays, and case analysis, and an in-person oral & practical exam as well. This week, we wanted to share with you some of our favorite questions from the exam, mainly to focus on the reasons we ask…

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Podcast 050: West Virginia Herbal Medics

This week we’re out in Coal River Valley, West Virginia, helping out at a free herbal clinic for folks in this area who’ve been affected by mountaintop removal mining. We interviewed three members of the local Herbal Medics team – Maureen, Hannah, and Lauren share their connections to the area, connecting with locals (and reconnecting…

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Podcast 049: A Few Herbs On Our Shelf

This week we do a lightning round of “minigraphs” on some of our favorite herbs. We started by taking a look at what we’ve got on our herb shelf (okay . . . *shelves*) in the kitchen right now, and selecting a few semi-randomly until our 45 minute timer went off. We covered reishi, catnip,…

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Podcast 048: Pumpkin Spice – That’s Herbalism Too!

It’s not just for lattes anymore: the ubiquitous pumpkin spice blend is in fact an herbal formula! The standard pumpkin [pie] spice mix is cinnamon, ginger, clove, allspice, nutmeg. From an herbalists point of view, this is a mix of aromatic, pungent, carminative spices, very antioxidant-rich, and most of which are also antimicrobial. In this…

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Podcast 047: Tinnitus & Headaches

Ryn leads off this week with a variety of herbs to try reducing the ringing in the ears called tinnitus. Herbs to drain stuck fluids, quell nervous irritation, and increase cerebral circulation can all help out with this distracting problem. Katja has some great ideas for you headache sufferers out there – starting with some…

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Podcast 046: Caring for Eldercaregivers & Botulism

Caregiving is exhausting, thankless, necessary work, and becoming increasingly more common. In the first half of this episode, Katja shares some insights into the difficulties facing those who are caring for elders, and herbal allies who can help them as they help others. In the second half, Ryn shares what he found after investigating everything…

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Podcast 045: How To Start A Free Herbal Clinic

This week we bring you a podcast we originally aired on the HerbRally podcast as its inaugural episode, last July, all about the model we use for running free herbal clinics – both in our own space here in Boston, as well as out in communities in need. We wanted to share it in case…

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Podcast 044: Empty Nests & Challenges

If back-to-school means the nest is empty, you may want some herbal support! Katja shares her favorite allies for this difficult transition. Ryn reflects on a forest movement immersion event he experienced recently, and shares some lessons he [re]learned there about challenge, adaptability, and seeing the complex context. Herbs discussed include hawthorn, motherwort, sage, catnip,…

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Podcast 043: Salad Isn’t Salad & Back-To-School Herbs

This week, Ryn leads off with some thoughts on salad: why it’s often boring and nutritionally deficient, and how to boost it up with some wild greens, herbal pesto, spice blends, and feral berries – and how to get these from the grocery store when it’s not spring or summer. Katja goes over some herbs…

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Podcast 042: Sleep – Of Cravings, Comedians, & Caffeine

In this episode both Ryn & Katja have things to share related to sleep. Katja leads off with a listener question about alcohol cravings at bedtime, then discusses some of her own strategies for coping with restless thoughts that interfere with rest. Ryn lays out the effects of caffeine in the body to help you…

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Podcast 041: Pets’ Paws & Topical EO Safety

This week, a case of histiocytoma on a dog’s paw leads Katja to talk about wound care for animal companions. What to do when a furry friend has a wound? Help it out with herbs! It’s not as hard as you might be thinking. Ryn received a helpful email this week that made him want…

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Podcast 040: Wildfires, Trainwrecks, and Cold Digestion in Hot Weather

The world’s on fire, no one wants to admit they’re occasionally catastrophic, and sometimes all you want to eat is ice cream. In this episode we’ll talk about herbs to support respiratory health in times of dryness and smoke inhalation. We’ve also got a dramatic* reading of Katja’s favorite blog post ever, You’re A Trainwreck.…

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Podcast 039: Herbs for Introverts & Extraverts

Introverts & extraverts, as patterns of personality, each have their strengths and weaknesses. In this episode we’ll discuss herbal allies to accommodate common discomforts experienced by those who identify with one or another pole of this spectrum. Introversion & extraversion don’t need to be “fixed”, but their extremes can be balanced and their weak points…

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Podcast 038: Our Top Ten Tinctures

A listener asked us what would be our five favorite tinctures to have on hand, so this week we’re each going to share with you a list of herbs we just can’t live without! We talk a bit about each one’s virtues and the way we ourselves work with these herbs. Katja’s list: ghost pipe,…

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herbal medicine for beginners - book cover

Our Book is Now Available on Amazon.com

Our first book is here!

This is the perfect introduction to a powerful yet manageable apothecary of 35 herbs and teach you how to apply them to common ailments.

We keep it simple and practical, and along the way teach you how to think effectively about herbs & herbalism, laying the foundations for deeper study.

The book is available through Amazon.com

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