Herbal Education in the Vitalist Tradition at Boulder's new herbal school
North American Institute of Medical Herbalism, Inc

NAIMH,
                  INC




Distance Learning Courses

All our courses have an audio portion, and a data disk with notes, readings, textbooks, and supplemental materials. Materials may be purchased for self-study with no tuition,  or each may be taken for credit with faculty support as a stand-alone course with a Continuing Education certificate. Courses may also be taken as components of our comprehensive Certification Programs.

Click on the course titles for more detailed information

First Course in Medical Herbalism  

This is an entry level course for the study of herbal medicine, and presents the context of the vitalist approach to healing, nutrition and lifestyle, and also a basic introduction to formulation, with case-based study, You will learn 15 herbs and how to use them to care for more than twenty different conditions. Most important you will learn how to study an herb, which will establish a foundation for effective future learning. This is a project-oriented course, you will taste the herbs, journal their effects, make your own tinctures, devise formulas, and study actual clinical cases. Do not mistake this to be a simplistic introductory course, it contains within it the inspiration, hands-on experience, tools, terms and concepts, and methods of application, and case based learning that many contemporary herbalists missed out on in their own education.

Practical Herbalism: A Course in the Practical Uses of 50 Herbs

This is full immersion into hands-on herbalism in the vitalist paradigm, where we study and use herbs in the context of a broad vision of harmony or discord in the diet, lifestyle, and constitutional individuality of the patient. You will learn how to use a set of 50 herbs to support nutrition, digestion, rest, skin conditions, pain, and common self limiting infections and fevers. We cover in-depth the practical uses of the herbs, with attention to the all-important  hot, cold, moist, dry, tense, and relaxed constitutional states of patients, conditions, and herbs.

Vitalist Treatment of Acute symptoms  

The forces of life and nature tend inherently toward healing, restoration, and the preservation and evolution of life within an individual. Acute symptoms are an expression of that same life force, and are essentially healing in nature. In treating acute symptoms, the practitioner walks a fine line between relieving suffering of the chief complaint, and suppressing the inherent healing forces of nature. This course demonstrates non-suppressive, supportive treatments for the major symptomatic complaints. It is comprised of recordings of an advanced post-graduate apprentice seminar for recent graduates of a school of clinical herbalism. This 12-lesson course covers the physiology, pathology, nutrition, pharmacology, herbal actions, and vitalist and constitutional considerations for acute symptoms whether as primary complaints or part of a larger presentation of chronic disease. You will learn non-suppressive and supportive treatments for digestion, tooth and gum problems, heartburn, nausea, diarrhea, constipation, hemorrhoids, dysbiosis, blood purification, acne, eczema, poison ivy/oak, wounds, minor burns, boils, skin ulcers, fatigue, insomnia, depression, anxiety, pain, excess mucous, cough, sore throat, asthma, allergies, eye problems, fever, colds, influenza, urinary tract infections, menstrual complaints, and support for pregnancy and lactation.

Advanced herbal actions and formulation 

Any combination of two herbs will convey the actions of each of the herbs, but may also produce a synergy so as to create an entirely new medicine. The study of pairing and simple combinations is the foundatiion of effective and flexible formulation. This course begins by simplifying and clarifying the concepts of herbal actions, which today are a cacophany of terms which resembles the state of language after the fall of the Tower of Babel. You will then learn the principles of moving from simple herb, to pair or triplet, and ultimately to complex patient-tailored formula.

Materia Medica Intensive

Three veteran medical herbalists, with a combined clinical experience of more than 75 years, were given the task to “start talking about the herbs where everyone else stops” over four days of an advanced seminar. You will learn special uses of herbs, new categories, humoral and energetic considerations, differentials between similar herbs, and other practical experience-based information.

Herbal Safety Seminar

Although harm caused by herbal medicines is uncommon, any herb strong enough to act as a medicine may also have an adverse effect if given for the wrong condition, the wrong patient, in the wrong dose, or at the wrong time. In the modern era, even an otherwise harmless herb may cause harmful interaction with a prescription or over-the-counter drug. In this course you will learn the principles of herbal toxicity and drug-herb interactions, the possible side effects or harms caused by 35 of the most important medicinal herbs, and the toxicology of essential oils. Also included is a section on “the fragile patient” and the need to use gentler herbs in lower doses for elders, children, or patients who are weak. 

Herbal Detoxification, Alteratives, and the Liver

In this course you will learn the basic concepts of detoxification in both traditional and contemporary medicine, and the use of traditional alteratives or blood purifiers. Included are the pathophysiology, signs, and symptoms of low grade or serious liver disease. You will learn the uses of 40 herbs for blood purification, detoxification,  or liver conditions, with methods for formulation.

Systemic Inflammation, Food Intolerance, and Autoimmunity: Pathophysiology and Natural Therapeutics

This course describes in great detail current scientific concepts of digestion, immunity, and autoimmunity to explain the "dotted line" between an immunological response in the gut, and systemic manifestations of disease. You will learn assessment methods, with an emphasis on interview and examination skills rather than on questionable laboratory antibody testing. A complete review of lifestyle factors, nutrition, herbal materia medica and formulation strategies for inflammation and the Leaky Gut Syndrome are included. This course prepares you with the complete skill set to assess and coach a patient through removal of an offending food. This course material was developed over a period of more than twenty years, and delivered in various formats to hundreds of intermediate students of herbalism, nutrition, and naturopathic medicine as part of pre-clinical training. These methods were honed in several multi-faculty teaching clinics continuously between 1995 and 2013. Foods in the diet which evoke an immunological inflammatory response are nearly universal in modern chronic disease, and removal can in many cases cause symptoms of even some serious diseases to fall away. Cases presented in this audio course include congestive heart failure, panic disorder, systemic lupus, multiple sclerosis, severe eczema, systemic lymphadenopathy, and a dozen more, which were cured or greatly improved with removal and strict avoidance of an offending food.

Fatigue: Pathopysiology, Natural Therapeutics, and Adaptogens

In this course you will learn the tools and skill set to assess and address the patient who complains of  Fatigue. You will learn the pathophysiology, differential diagnosis, and root causes of fatigue; methods for using herbal medicine and formulation to address sleep and sleep debt. The categories of adaptogens and Chinese tonic herbs are covered in depth. Included is a critical view of the concept of the adaptogen, with illustrations of how the misuse of this herbal category can promote burnout rather than relieve it. Included are sections on Chinese tonic herbs for the Western herbalist, and Chinese herbs for athletic training and performance. 

Insulin Resistance: Pathophysiology and Natural Therapeutics 36 hours 8 weeks

Insulin resistance is the root pathology not only of Type II diabetes, but also contributes to heart disease, stroke, obesity, hypertension, several common cancers, and other conditions ranging from polycystic ovarian disease to acne to brittle bones and depression. It is a pathology fundamental to the “diseases of civilization.” Although cell level pathology is complex, the roots of this condition are based in malnutrition in the basic nutrients that regulate insulin, untrained muscle mass, and imbalances in the carbohydrate content of the diet. Correcting these three roots of insulin resistance, along with herbal allies to help restore imbalance, can cause some chronic diseases to resolve in a matter of weeks to months. In this course you will learn the pathophysiology of insulin resistance, and the influence of diet, exercise, nutrition and herbs on the condition. You will gain understanding and competence in the clinical application of protocols based on the material learned.

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