Chinese herbs work to enhance digestion and rebalance the functioning of your internal organs.
Chinese herbs are chosen by flavour and temperature qualities, then combined into a formula to restore the functional dynamics of your body. The synergy of the various ingredients used create the therapeutic effect.
What are Chinese herbs
Chinese herbalists utilise substances readily found in nature including seeds, leaves, barks and minerals to assist the body in restoring its health.
These substances such as cinnamon, liquorice or ginger are often familiar. Others such as Bupleurum or Astragalus may not be so familiar.
Occasionally insect or animal products may also be used. At Dantian Health, endangered species and unethically sourced products are never used, with alternatives available for people following a vegetarian lifestyle.
Each substance used in Chinese herbal medicine is viewed through its properties of taste, temperature and nature, which together guide the herb to elicit a specific effect on the body.
What the formulas do
Chinese herbal medicine and formulas have been used for more than 2000 years in the management of acute and chronic health complaints.
Chinese herbs are generally administered as a formula in which multiple herbs are combined to work synergistically to send a specific message to the body.
These formulas support the functioning of the body and help replenish the material aspects which may have been damaged through the external climatic environment, mental and emotional stress, overwork, poor diet, lack of exercise, toxic overload and trauma.
Chinese herbal consultations
Chinese herbal formulas are tailored specifically to your presentation, following in depth observation, questioning and palpation.
As treatment progresses, the dynamics of your body should be shifting and hence the formula should be modified or changed accordingly to best assist your journey of restoring health.
Chinese herbal formulas are prescribed in many different forms such as decoctions, powders and pills, each with its own benefits and specific purpose.
At Dantian Health, formulas are generally prescribed in the form of herbal granules where the herbs have been decocted to extract their active constituents and are then combined to specifically match the presenting needs of your body.
This method of prescription allows for easy consumption as the only preparation that is required is to add warm water to your granule formula.
Chinese herbal formulas offer a drug-free alternative to the management of pain and health conditions. If you’re taking any medications regularly, be sure to discuss this with your practitioner to avoid any possible interactions.
Becoming a Chinese herbalist
The minimum qualification in Chinese herbalism is a 4-5 year Bachelors degree, generally taught in conjunction with acupuncture. Western and Chinese medical sciences are studied and many cases, both live and simulated, are examined to ensure appropriate experience in prescribing herbs.
For this reason it is best to visit a properly trained and registered Chinese herbalist to ensure the formula you are taking is and remains the most appropriate for your current health.
Chinese herbal medicine at Dantian Health
Training to be a Chinese herbalist involves study of the TCM methodology, which is a mixture of many different schools of thoughts throughout the long history of Chinese medicine.
At Dantian Health, I have pursued postgraduate studies in the Tian family lineage of classical herbal medicine, under the tutelage of Arnaud Versluys of ICEAM, graduating with a Diploma in Canonical Chinese Medicine. This study includes me within a small group of a few hundred practitioners world wide who have been inducted into this lineage.
This is resemblant of the classical methodology of learning through intensive study with a single master, allowing a more in depth grasp of a particular school of thought.
The key element to practice within the Tian lineage is the emphasis on in depth pulse analysis to determine precisely which herbs and formulas are directly indicated by the body. This allows for more confidence in selecting the correct formula for your health than through questioning alone, as well as a concrete methodology to monitor the progress of treatment.
The formulas primarily used at Dantian Health have been around for 2000 years of documented use, being drawn from the oldest clinical text on Chinese medicine available, the Shang Han Za Bing Lun.
Dantian Health offers Chinese Herbal medicine consultations at two locations – Brunswick in inner north Melbourne and Yarrambat in the north east.