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Herbal Medicine

Traditional Treatments for Today's World


Herbal Medicine uses plant extracts, such as dandelion and liquorice, to treat specific indications, and are taken either internally or used externally. You will be familiar with the diagnostics as your blood pressure is taken, your lungs checked and listened to, your ears examined and blood tests may be used or further investigations as you may have experienced with a Western GP.

The Practice of Western Herbal Medicine is very much holistic in that we will look at the whole person rather than reduce you down to a set of symptoms. This allows the therapist to work on root causes of the problems, helping to restore balance and wellbeing and get you back to optimum health. 

One of the many benefits of herbal medicine is that it’s suitable for pretty much anyone with any condition.  Age is also not a limitation with herbal medicine.

What should I expect?

An initial consultation lasts approximately 1 hour, during which time the current issues are discussed as well as taking a full case history which includes your general health, digestion, family health and diet and lifestyle. This allows the herbalist to get the full picture and work on the whole person, because of course, your individual needs will enable a tailor made prescription to be put together.

Herbs are generally given in the form of a liquid tincture, a mixture of herbs in an alcoholic extract which are taken twice daily; though teas, tablets and capsules are also used. The prescription is tailor made to you and will be working on resolving the underlying problems and providing more instant relief from symptoms.

Why choose Herbal Medicine at LEAF Health?

Our therapist has completed a four year Bachelor of Science degree in herbal medicine. The course involves learning diagnostic techniques, nutrition, clinical sciences, pharmacology and the materia medica of the all-important herbs.

The National Institute of Medical Herbalists is the oldest professional association for herbalists in the UK and being a member means that certain criteria must be met; a minimum level of education, clinical hours, continuing professional development and insurance are some of the essentials.



Click on a question below to view its answer…

How Old is Herbal Medicine?

Herbal medicine is the oldest form of medicine. Records go back over thousands of years to the earliest days of Western, Oriental and American civilisation. Many modern medicines have their origins in plants. For instance Warfarin, the blood thinning drug, is derived from sweet clover (Melliotus officinalis). Herbal medicine practiced today combines this historic knowledge with the latest research on herbs, to make treatment strategies even safer and more effective.


Is Herbal Medicine Safe?

Qualified herbalists are trained to consider the safety of herbs when prescribing.  When preparing your prescription, herbalists consider your own unique health circumstances, any drugs you are currently being prescribed plus all the latest safety data on the herbs in your prescription. The level of training and consideration given to our patients mean that medical herbalists have an excellent safety record.

Is Herbal Medicine Similar to Homeopathy?

Both herbal medicine and homeopathy use herbs in their remedies. This is where the similarity ends. The philosophy and general approach to treatment is very different. Homeopathy uses very diluted medicines. In fact, there is unlikely to be any pharmacologically active ingredients in a homeopathic plant medicine.

 Herbal medicine, on the other hand, uses the whole herb which contains active plant constituents that have an effect on the body. The broad range of chemicals in the herbal remedy work together to help the body to return to normal function. The herbalists’ skill is in selecting the appropriate herbal formula for each individual.

How Many Treatments Will I Need?

There is no standard course of treatment and the number of sessions you will need depends on your health condition and your current symptoms. It will also depend on the severity of your condition and how your condition progresses with the treatment.

“Went to see Jo the Medical Herbalist at Hitchin for my osteoporosis.  After treatment, I have even managed to join a gym!  Lovely person and would recommend”.

Brenda J