Maggie Pope
is a Medical Herbalist

Practising in
Bridgwater, Somerset

Get in Touch Maggie Pope

It’s not just about the herbs…

I am a fan of Herbal Medicine [obviously] and I am of the opinion that one can treat quite serious illnesses with herbs. I’m not just talking about a cup of chamomile tea at night time, and some mint leaves with your dinner. I am talking about a proper assessment with a qualified and insured Medical Herbalist, who takes a full medical history, does physical examinations and comes to a diagnosis – and who then can create a prescription and a lifestyle plan. Now, herbal tinctures do not taste nice in the main, but taken regularly at full dose, they can really help with acute and chronic disease processes.

However.

Patients need to adhere to the lifestyle plan as well. What does it contain? In general some personalised advice concerning sleeping, exercise, emotional stress and eating. And there is the rub. The eating. So often patients find it difficult to stick to the foods I recommend and leave the foods that I advise they stop consuming. I have wondered what to do about this for many months, as to get the quickest return to health people need to eat wholesome food and stop eating refined processed food. Then something very frustrating happened…

I was on holiday in Norway and met up with an old acquaintance who had lost a lot of weight and was also looking fit and healthy. This woman was in her 60’s and when I saw her last year she was overweight and complaining of long-term digestive problems as well as other minor problems such as chronic fatigue. When I commented on her new slim look she told me that her stomach problems had gone and she had so much energy…

The frustrating part was how she had done it. She had gone to a doctor and paid about £300 for a diet plan with a daily menu written down to follow, and when she told me of all the foods she could eat and all the foods she couldn’t eat I realised that it was more or less the same foods that I say try to eat or not to eat. So how had she succeeded where my patients found it so hard?

It was the meal plan. Every day she knows what to have for breakfast, lunch and dinner. And what to snack on. Ah. ‘Could you have followed this diet without the meal plan?’ I asked her. ‘No.’ she said.

There you go. Each time I give dietary advice I will send out a meal plan so patients don’t just have a list of foods they ‘ought’ to be eating, but they can follow a meal list without even thinking.

It’s the thinking that’s the hard part.

 

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