Top Books for Herbal Medicine


| 12/19/2018 12:10:00 PM


herbal-medicines 
Photo courtesy of Getty Images/Madeline_Steinbach

Healing herbs and their many medicinal wonders have always fascinated me. What fascinates me even more than medicinal herbs, though, is that we have in the past several decades turned to expensive pharmaceuticals to treat our many ailments instead of referring to time-tested herbal medicines. A lot of conventional pharmaceuticals are indeed rendered from natural sources, but through processing, those beneficial compounds that were once found in herbal remedies are now synthesized in a laboratory in order to mass produce other drugs. It’s similar to processed food versus real food. Processed food at one time came from a natural source, but over the course of time the desire to mass produce food has led to low-quality food made in lab kitchens rather than grown on farms and cooked in kitchens.

Now before anyone gets too mad at me for saying that I claim all pharmaceuticals are bad, I will beat you to the punch and simply say that there are many conventional pharmaceutical drugs that have saved lives and improved the quality of life for many. There are certainly always those exceptions to be made. However, I believe natural and holistic medicines are far too underutilized and could do wonders in preventive healthcare, as well as treatment when used correctly. And these improve quality of life at a far lower cost in the long run than conventional medicines.

Herbal-Healing-For-Women 
Cover courtesy of Touchstone Books

Probably the foremost voice on herbal medicines would have to be herbalist Rosemary Gladstar. I remember my mother buying her first book, Herbal Healing for Women, back in the early 1990s. She’s since expanded her published works to include books covering medicinal plants and herbs specific for natural beauty, stress and anxiety, and common ailments. Medicinal Herbs is a great guide for herbalist beginners. She touches on identifying beneficial plants, how to grow many of them, and how to put them to use when you need them. Gladstar has been teaching and practicing herbal medicine for more than 35 years, and her talks on herbal remedies at the Mother Earth News Fairs are always packed. She is a great conversationalist and this comes through in her books. It feels like she’s right next to you helping make your first tincture.  



 Medicinal-Herbs
Cover courtesy of Storey Publishing



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