Choosing Natural Healing Over Western Medicine

Choosing Natural Healing Over Western Medicine

We can’t deny the fact that western medicine has done a lot to prevent illnesses and treat a variety of diseases. However, many people are not only learning about but fully embracing the benefits of holistic medicine. 

Here’s what Trish Taylor has to say:



1. Please explain what exactly a herbalist is and what you need to qualify for becoming one?

Herbalism/ Phytotherapy is a booming industry, as it is very much part of alternative medicine. Many people are turning to natural healing options these days.There are various colleges throughout the world that offer Herbalism Diplomas.  I received my Diploma from the South African college of Herbalism.  It is vital that therapists obtain a qualification, as many plants and herbs can be toxic or poisonous and one needs to know precisely what to use. Herbal healing therapy involves using medicinal plants and herbs in teas, tinctures, ointments, and poultices.  Herbs are generally safe to use for people of all ages and can be carefully combined to use in conjunction with other medication.

2. I understand that Ayurveda involves holistic medicine and is centuries old – but for the sake of our readers, can you tell us exactly what it entails and where one goes to study it?

As far as I know, the Ayurvedic Healing Tradition dates back over 5 000 years, making it one of the oldest forms of medicine.  People are assessed according to their “Doshas” or body types. These being Pitta (linked to fire), Vata (related to air) and Kapha (connected to earth).  They are then advised accordingly on a diet, and lifestyles to keep their bodies in balance.

3. How long have you been in this industry and why did you choose it over western medicine?

I have studied various modes of Health and healing for the past 40 years. One of them being Herbalism.  A few years ago my daughter and I launched Life Retreat, to advise people on living Healthy balanced lifestyles.  We have since opened up a Healing Hub which includes a Yoga studio, Health Shop, and Spa and is based at Lourensford Estate.  We have hosted various retreats and have many more in the pipeline that includes. Moms n Daughters, Detoxing, Cancer, Weight Loss, stress reduction, etc

4. How are herbal medicines better than western medicines? 

I don’t believe that there is any form of medicine that is better than another, but rather that there is a place for everything.  The main difference is that what we do is firstly our best to prevent illness by guiding clients on how to live a healthy lifestyle according to their body types and ailments.  Whereas medicine generally focuses on treating illness. 

5. I am quite interested in the new hype called cannabis oil. Some claim that it helps and can even cure cancer. Is this true? Can you tell us more about the drug and what your opinions are about its usage?

There is a massive hype about Cannabis oil, and I have encountered many people who have had excellent results using it. In many countries Medical Cannabis oil is legal, and SA shouldn’t be too far behind. The problem here at the moment is that many people are selling backyard cannabis products as medical cannabis and this can be extremely dangerous.  There are well over 100 Cannabinoids, which can be used to treat various ailments.  So far in Countries where it is legal, there has been great, documented success in managing and healing cancer, insomnia, anxiety, rheumatism, relieves nausea and many more ailments and diseases.  It is brilliant when used for reducing pain.  Medical Cannabis is usually dispensed in the form of capsules, oils, tincture, ointments or suppositories.

6. What other herbal medicines can be used to cure life-threatening diseases – please give us a few examples?

Oil that we have only recently begun working with is Emu oil, and we have seen incredible results in reducing inflammations and pain.  It can also be used for constipation, rheumatism, arthritis weight loss and improving digestion

Here are some uses for the most common herbs that people can grow and use at home

People must always remember to consult their doctors if they are on prescribed medication, before using any alternative remedies,

But all of the below foods can safely be added, fresh to your meals

Parsley – lowers blood pressure, strengthens bones, so can use for osteoporosis

Basil – brings down fevers, reduces stress, is good for skin

Lavender – helps to relax and sleep, has antidepressant properties. Lavender oil heals burns, and when mixed with peppermint oil relieves headaches and migraines

Aloe Vera reduces clogging of the arteries and prevents varicose veins. Can be used on insect bites and stings

Mint is an antioxidant,  improves terrible breath, helps with nausea

Rosemary enhances memory and has anti-bacterial properties

Celery acts as a diuretic.

7. There is also a product called blackseed oil that claims to heal any ailment – Do you know about this oil and can you tell us if these claims are true?

Once again this is not necessarily a cure, but can help with healing and preventing:  tumor growth improves asthma, protects the brain,  protects the liver, has anti-inflammatory properties, enhances brain function,  anti-viral properties, boosts the immune system.

8. Where can one go if you want to seek the help of a herbalist – and is it an exensive exercise? Does Medical Aid recognize the practice?

You can come to our Life Retreat Healing Hub of course. We also offer lifestyle guidelines to clients remotely.  With these, we highly recommend that the clients continue to see their doctors or practitioners. The client fills in a detailed questionnaire and has a Skype consultation with one of us. We then work out a lifestyle program for them which includes diet, exercise, health, sleep, stress management etc., in fact, every aspect of their lives, which we send back to them. And then do follow-ups.  There are Herbalists that people can see anywhere in the world.

Remedies cannot be claimed off medical aid, but we do have medical doctors in our team, and as soon as medical Cannabis oil is legalized in SA, patients will be able to claim off medical aid.

9. What everyday products can we use in our homes to cure headaches, flu, tummy aches and viruses, body aches,

I have four children who are now all healthy young adults, and I have always treated with alternative remedies.  But with this said and done, I do believe that there is a place for conventional medicine and if someone breaks a bone or is seriously ill, etc. it is vital that they get medical help.  We never used anti biotics, and I focused very much on prentative rather than curative medicines

Some of the remedies that we permanently have on hand are:

Lavender oil drops – a few drops can be put on your pillow for insomnia or rubbed on your temples.  Plus I have used this on burns, and it has been amazing

Chamomile tea is brilliant for insomnia, stress, testing and colicky babies

Traumeel drops we use for an earache, toothache, traveling, cuts and trauma

Basil, we keep fresh pots growing in our kitchen to deter flies

Tea tree oil we burn in our humidifier every winter to prevent and treat colds and flu

Fresh peppermint we use for nausea

Aloe Vera, we use for constipation

Ginger prevents colds and flu and is suitable for nausea

Sage relieves sore throats

Garlic has eased sinuses and lowers blood pressure

Cinnamon and cloves lower sugar levels

10. What exercises do you recommend to enjoy a holistic life?

I  highly recommend yoga for everyone, as it makes you 

– makes you fit

– makes you flexible

– reduces stress

– improves breathing

– improves sleeping

– strengthens you mentally

– improves posture

– enables you to connect with yourself

– it is enjoyable

Walking and hiking are perfect exercises and preferably should be done outdoors

Other preferable daily practices include

– meditation

– body brushing

– hot oil self-massage

– inversions

– rebounding

– oil pulling

– getting some sunshine

– spending time in nature

– drinking warm ginger water

– positive affirmations

One vitally important thing we have not touched base on is our Diet – but we can do a whole article on this. Most natural remedies and supplements can be purchased on and delivered anywhere in the world

For more info on any of the above please email:

Share this:

Tags: , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked

Life Retreat

WP2Social Auto Publish Powered By :