Kristen Funk Medical Herbalist
What is Phytotherapy? Phytotherapy is the practice of using medicinal herbs to treat a variety of ailments and to bring the body back to a state of health and balance. It can be used complementary to other treatments or on its own. With an array of remedies from gentle to potent it is effective at treating long-standing chronic conditions as well as the acute, such as facilitating post-surgery healing or the common cold.
The advantage in herbal medicine lies in its complexity. In each plant there are hundreds, if not thousands of compounds present that affect the body in a symbiotic manor. In even the most widely studied medicinal herbs, there are only a handful of compounds considered "active", meaning that it has a desired effect in the body. However, it is often the case that the plant with or without it's proposed active part will still exhibit this effect. It is because of the array of constituents pieced together in each plant in the perfect complimentary patterns that only nature can provide, that each herb has such a wide scope of medicinal properties.
"Phytotherapy" vs "Herbal Medicine" Herbal medicine, or medical herbalism, is our oldest form of medicine and it is still used today by over 80% of the world's population. Western herbal medicine today draws on extensive traditional knowledge reaching back over 2000 years, as well as scientifically proven treatments (the two often overlapping).
Phytotherapy is a term that emerged relatively more recently with the resurgence of herbal medicine in the UK. Literally meaning plant-therapy, it was coined by medical herbalists as they moved toward a more a scientific approach, separating them somewhat from the eclectics; a movement born in the 19th Century United States. Because this field is an unregulated profession, there is no official separation between the terms 'phytotherapist', 'herbalist', 'herbologist', 'natural therapist', and so forth, therefore the terms are often used interchangeably.
About Kristen Funk Medical Herbalist
Kristen is a Medical Herbalist registered with the Canadian Herbalist's Association of BC. and underwent four years of training at the Pacific Rim College, on unceded Lekwungen territories (Victoria, BC). She received her Diploma of Phytotherapy, has independently studied various models of traditional medicine, including Ayurveda and traditional Chinese medicine, and has a grounded understanding of nutritional health.
She grew up in the Cariboo-Chilcotin region of BC, where she spent her days on the lake and in the woods. Growing up she dabbled in music and art and found joy in all things creative. It was in her early 20's that she recognized a stronger pull to learn about and reconnect with the natural world. Curious about both traditional understandings and our growing modern knowledge of the human body, she began to pursue an education in health. Her 2130 hours of training included an in depth study into the workings of plants on both a holistic and biochemical level, human physiology, pathology, and therapeutics, as well as 510 hours of clinical practice under qualified and renowned herbalists. During her education, she traveled to Ometepe, Nicaragua, where she worked for a short time with Natural Doctors International (NDI) in a not-for-profit public clinic, exposing her to a variety of different health concerns and treatments.
As a practitioner, Kristen values empowerment of her clients in their own healing journeys, and inclusivity and accessibility at all levels. This means non-judgment and flexibility. She strives to erase the notion of non-conventional medicines being available only to the wealthy, and bring herbs, a medicine of the people, back to the people. As well as fairness to her clients, she values fairness to the plants, and upholds sustainable harvesting and sourcing practices for all her medicines.
HoursBy Appointment Only
1 hours notice
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