Traditional Chinese Medicine

The many branches of Traditional Chinese Medicine, TCM, include therapies of herbal medicine, acupuncture, cupping, and many other techniques including body therapies. All of these therapies all branch from the same philosophical system, commonly called the five elements system. The five elements system is based in a simple philosophy that you have probably heard of,…

Stress and the benefits of crying

Cry it out. That is what someone might say if they are supportive of you needing to cry. As we are grow up, crying is often something we do when we are sad, maybe even angry. As adults, we often restrict our crying to mourning the loss of our family and friends. Are there benefits…

Holy Basil as Yoga

Tusli is also known as holy basil and it said to be the the yoga of all herbs. Just like the yoga pose Tadasana, tulsi provides balance and grounding. This plant is considered an Ayurvedic herb, with its origin believed to be in north central India, now growing throughout the eastern world tropics. Tulsi is…

Fires Rising: Turning Lead to Pure Gold

Every year I visit a retreat center in southern Pennsylvania in the beginning of June for a transformative change program. This is done through three nights of drumming, dancing, and chanting in a meditative state. While this is not everyone’s cup of tea, every year I make great strides in my own personal mental wellness….

Plant Spirit Medicine Intro

Learning about plant spirit medicine is a healing and learning practice on its own. I have minimal experience at this time but I have been so fascinated with this I wanted to share it with you. Last May I guided a class on their first experiences with Plant Spirit Medicine. This is a personal experience to…

Stress Relief Breathing Practices

In America, and most of the developed world, we experience stress as a response to every day life. Our bodies stress response was developed to protect us from danger, from a lion or bear trying to eat us. These are not the dangers we are not exposed to on a daily basis yet our body…

Anti-Spasmodic Herbs

Spasms are when a muscle in your body contracts, or activates, with out reason. If you have ever had diarrhea you know the feeling as your bowels start to contract when they do not need to-leading you to the bathroom. It is not just the colon that can have spasms. Muscles through the entire digestive…

Anti-Microbial Herbs

You have probably heard the word antimicrobial before but what does it mean. The word antimicrobial is an over arching term meaning that something is antibacterial, antiviral, and antifungal, the three different classes of microrganisms. Most herbs that have these actions have a stronger impact on supporting the immune system but some do have toxic…

Analgesics

Continuing on with our exploration of herbal actions, we come to analgesics. Many of you have probably heard this term before and it is a common one not just in herbal medicine but also in modern pharmaceutical practices. An analgesic compound is one that relieves pain. Some herbs are falsely called analgesics but rather work…

Diet Soda 101

Many of you probably drink diet soda. It is better for you than regular soda, right? Not so much. Generally diet soda is lower in sugar or is made with artificial sweeteners. While it may sound like this is a great alternative there is a bit of a catch. Let’s say you drink a normal,…

Kava Kava

Betsy Miller, MS, CNS, LDN A Balanced Life Wellness Clinic & Apothecary, LLC When I start a new piece of writing about a plant, I always want to start with “<insert plant> is one of my favorite plants…”   Seriously though, kava is truly one of my favorite plants, and I have been exploring my relationship…

Milky Oats-Monograph

  Milky oats, oat straw, and your beloved oatmeal, all come from that same plant, Avena sativa in the Poaceae, grass family. Right before the seed becomes fully mature it goes through a 2-3 day stage when the spikelets are milky. This is when they are harvested for medicine. Oats has a sweet taste and…