Herbal Remedies: Reference Guide by Asa Hershoff

(No Series)
  Nonfiction / Herbal

An essential reference to herbal remedies for the most common ailments. Sharing twenty-five years of clinical expertise, Dr. Asa Hershoff has written a highly accessible and useful guide to hundreds of herbs and their uses for specific conditions. The book's unique format helps readers quickly assess health conditions. Margins on each page depict icons of body parts for very easy reference. An alphabetical listing of ailments provides information on each herb's source, dosage, and possible contraindications.

Integrating the best of herbal tradition and science, this authoritative book is an essential guide for tapping the healing power of herbs.

** A mirror image of his homeopathic book, which I also recommend**

Asa Hershoff, ND, is a naturopathic physician, chiropractor and homeopath who also uses herbal remedies. What a resume :) He also owns and runs an actual practice, which is a refreshing change for an author of natural healing. Andrea Rotelli, ND, is also a naturopath who uses flower essenses, herbalism and medical astrology. The qualified mixture here holds promise.

This book is more of a reference manual than anything else, so never buy it expecting more than that or you will be dissapointed. It is not an 'herbal', as no herbs are given in detail. It also has absolutely ZERO formulas, remedies, recipes, or combinations. Again, it's a reference - and an excellent one at that.

The first section on How to Use Herbs was fascinating as, although it was short and sweet, the authors go over the history of herbs in different parts of the world, from Global to Asian to Indian, to North American. The history of medicine is always fascinating and enough detail is given here to provide fuel for more learning in other sources. He also includes some small sections of plant constituents, much like Hoffman does in his illustrated holistic herbal.

A different thing about this book is that it's followed by the effects various herbs have, but on the systems, which is how this book is categorized. There are several interesting points brought up in the how to use herbs section, as well as history and info, and all done from an actual healers standpoint, not overly cautious and theoretical, but with enthusiasm and belief. A nice change.

The next is the heart of the book. Each body system is divided, with drawings by Asa, and then the conditions are in alphabetical order.

Frankly the organization IS a bit confusing (you'll see what I mean when you need something and it's not just alphabetical order), but it's doable. Each condition is introduced with a brief note on cause and conditions, and an overview of treatment needed (not just herbal) After this herbs are listed, with 3 - 4 lines under the herb name. On each line is a different point on why this herb should be used, pretty nifty. By each herb name are stars, one being a recommended herb but with a weak effect, and the larger number (guessing five) showing how strongly it affects.

It ends with a brief wrap up of herbs covered.

Overall this is meant to be a quick reference guide and doesn't try to claim itself as anything else. It's good for a cinch, and I always turn here for conditions, along with other herbs. FOr one thing it almost always seems to mention an herb other sources don't , or bring up a reason for usage others don't. It stands out from the crowd because of this, and because of this reason is why I also regard it so highly.

If you're in need of a good reference, here's one to get.