This compendium of medical herbalism by one of the most eminent herbalists practicing today is both comprehensive and practical. Answering basic as well as complicated questions about herbal medicine, it provides both the vice and the experienced practitioner with a reliable framework in which to develop their herbal skills. A discussion of the history and modern practice of herbalism, encompassing the influences of Welsh, Chinese, and Native American herbal medicine is followed by a practical reference section that lists the various actions herbs have on the body (carminative, anti-inflammatory, etc.), with examples of herbs and their mode of activity in each category. Herbal prescriptions for various illnesses are also organized under the main systems of the body so that information can be quickly and easily referenced. A final section covers the fundamentals of growing, drying storing and cooking with herbs, as well as the making of infusions, decoctions, oils, and ointments. The author also provides helpful introductions to aromatherapy and plant medicines.
David Hoffmann has been a practicing medical herbalist and a member of Britain's National Institute of Medical herbalists since 1979. He has lectured widely and given seminars on this subject and is the author of Herbs for Healthy Aging, An Herbal Guide to Stress Relief, and Medical Herbalism.