What is Chinese herbal medicine?
Chinese herbal medicine is an important part of Chinese Medicine as a whole, and works hand in hand with acupuncture and dietary therapy to effectively treat or prevent a wide range of health conditions. Herbs are combined in personalised formulas and prescribed according to Chinese Medical theory, pattern diagnosis and disease diagnosis. Ingredients are chosen for their pharmacological benefits and for how they will work for an individual’s present state of health as well as their underlying constitution. Twigs, tubers, bark, roots, rhizomes, leaves, fruit, flowers and fungi may be used either in their whole form, in granulated/powdered form, or as pills or capsules. Occasionally minerals such as oyster shell may also be used. Some herbs - such as peppermint, ginger, shallot, honeysuckle, chrysanthemum and rhubarb - may be familiar to patients, while others are often less well known.
What can Chinese herbal medicine be used for?
Chinese herbal medicine can be used for a wide range of imbalances including but not limited to insomnia, stress, anxiety, symptoms associated with menopause, sinus problems, allergies, colds and flus, digestive imbalances, circulatory disorders, chronic pain, skin conditions, gynaecological and fertility problems.
What kind of herbs does Tina use at Elements of the Earth, and what do they taste like?
Tina works with ethical, high quality herbs in her clinic. All ingredients meet the Australian standards for complementary medicine as specified by the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA), and are sourced according to the principles of Good Manufacturing Practice (GMP). She avoids working with animal products and endangered species, and opts for organic wherever possible. Most prescriptions come in granulated or powdered herb form, making them very easy to take – you simply measure out the required amount (eg. 1 level teaspoon) into a cup of hot water before drinking.
In terms of taste, some of the herb formulas have quite a pleasant taste while others may taste more earthy or bitter depending on what they are being used for. Many patients say they look forward to taking their herbs each day, and some even enjoy the taste.
Tina also grows her own herbs and edible plants in her Blue Mountains garden, and works with them in a range of ways within her clinic. At your next appointment ask Tina about the Elements of the Earth small-batch herbal tea and tonic range, or ways to incorporate more garden-greens into your diet.