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Category: Herbal Pharmacy

September 2, 2021

What’s an Herbal Medicine “formula” All About?

What’s the difference between picking up recommended herbs off the grocery co-op shelf and visiting an East Asian Medicine-trained Herbalist?

The differences an Eastern medicine-trained herbalist can have on building your formula plan is huge. In this blog, we cover the differences between what you may find on the shelves and why finding an herbalist is so important to gain the full benefits of herbs and Eastern medicine. Learn more!

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July 21, 2021

How often do I need to get acupuncture treatments? (and other common curiosities about the course of treatment)

Best practices to get you out of the treatment room and back into your life (and sending all your friends and family our way).

The goal of any acupuncturist is to get you out of their clinic– and hopefully shouting from the rooftops about how your pain went away or that you haven’t slept this well since you were a teenager or one of the other 10,000 benefits of treatment. In order to get you out of our clinic and back into your life (and sending all your friends and family our way), we’ll ask you to commit to a consistent course of treatment for a specific length of time, and then we’ll re-evaluate along the way. You can expect a course of treatment to involve getting acupuncture once or twice a week, some lifestyle or movement coaching, and, when appropriate, a custom herbal prescription.

Consistency is Key

When people …

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March 9, 2021

Self-Care for Springtime Qi Stagnation

Learn to move your Qi Stagnation & transform feelings of stuckness or frustration into hope & creativity.


We’ve approached the one year mark of restrictions on our day to day lives due to COVID-19. What’s more, we’ve arrived at springtime: a time known to 5 Element Theory as an era for movement, growth, and change. All things considered, you wouldn’t be alone if you find yourself experiencing wide emotional swings from hope to frustration to despair and back to hope again.

If you’re feeling a little stuck, flustered, or bored, you may have what we Acupuncturists diagnose as “Qi Stagnation”. Qi stag, as its known shorthand, can show up as depression or irritability, pain or discomfort that comes and goes, a sense of bloating in the belly, PMS, or a stifled feeling in the chest or throat.

Luckily, you don’t need …

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October 14, 2020

A Neighborhood Plant for Smoke Season

Sang Ye, or the Mulberry leaf, has a lot to offer to support you after intense wildfire smoke.

Mulberry Medicine

Did you know that all of the parts of the Mulberry tree can be used medicinally? You might be used to eating the berries in late summer when we can find them at Berkeley Bowl or growing in our yards– but they’re not the only delicious thing about this plant! The leaf, known as Sang Ye in Chinese Medicine, is particularly known for clearing heat to cool & moisten the lungs. Luckily for our Lungs, these trees grow all over the place.

Watch this video to learn about the medicine & magic of the Mulberry tree from our Herbal Pharmacy Director & resident plant expert, Athene Eisenhardt, LAc.

Get a Prescription

Our herbal pharmacy carries Sang Ye year round, so even …

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September 17, 2020

Herbal Support for Wildfire Smoke

Breathe easier with Chinese Herbs

Wildfire season is no joke here in California. Chinese herbs can help your respiratory system during the smoky time of year. Keep reading to learn more!

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August 7, 2020

The Garden’s In Bloom!

Summer is the season of flowers and its in full swing here at AIMC. Open the blog post to check out our gallery of medicinal blooms!

Summer is the season of flowers and it’s in full swing here in the AIMC Garden.

Check out our gallery of beautiful and medicinal blooms, all grown with love here at AIMC:

Jie geng
Platycodon grandiflorus, Balloon Flower

The root is used to ease coughs of all kinds, clear phlegm, and aid the Lung qi.

Huo Xiang
Pogostemon cablin, Patchouli

Very effective to soothe nausea and vomiting of all kinds. A household staple!

Zhi Zi
Gardeniae, Gardenia

The fruit is used to clear heat and restlessness from the body. The flowers’ sweet, pure aroma lifts depression and sadness.

California Poppy
Eschscholzia californica

It’s not Chinese, but California Poppy has a place in our medicine as a cooling herb that acts on the Liver and the …

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June 20, 2020

Flower Essences at the Summer Solstice

Gentle Messages for the Heart

Flower Essences: Gentle Messages for the Heart Ruler

Today is the Summer Solstice, the longest and brightest day of the year. Summer is the
season of Sun and Light, and the Heart. In Chinese Medicine, the Heart is the Ruler that sits on our inner
throne and ensures harmony in our world. Just as in ancient China, when it was rare to actually glimpse
the revered Emperor, our own Heart Ruler is a behind the scenes presence that rules not through force,
but gently, effortlessly, through the quality we refer to as Wu-Wei. Thus, we approach the Heart Ruler
gently and reverently. For this reason, the Heart channel and Heart Back Shu points were classically
forbidden to needle. The approach is too direct. Approaching …

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May 21, 2020

Roses, Beautiful & Medicinal

Roses are more than meets the eye; they're part of the Chinese Medicine cabinet.

There is no flower as celebrated as Rose. Poets and romantics throughout time have sung its sweet songs. Rose is a flower of delight and sweetness, and that sweetness actually has a medicine and purpose in Traditional Chinese Herbalism.

Roses in Springtime

Its no coincidence that Rose (Mei Gui Hua) blooms in spring, the season of the Liver organ. Because spring corresponds to the Liver, during this time of the year people are more likely to experience ailments associated with Liver qi stagnation: stress, moodiness and irritability, depression, headaches, PMS, digestive issues, and an overall lack of smoothness and ease in the body. It just so happens that Rose is a wonderful remedy to help smooth out stuck Liver qi, de-stress, and harmonize the body …

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May 7, 2020

Recipe from the Herbal Pharmacy: Pickled Burdock Root for Spring Health

Burdock root is a beautiful spring food that is both nutritive and detoxifying. In TCM, we use Burdock seeds, Niu Bang Zi, to vent early stage cold and flu from the body and treat sore throats. The root, able to penetrate more deeply into the body, cleans the blood and vents out deeper held toxins and impurities.

In springtime, the bodies’ energy is moving up and out from the deep yin storage time of winter. Just like plants, our energy is now moving upwards and outwards to create new growth. When this happens, we can see pathogenic energy that was hidden in winter come to the surface along with it. This could look like a replay of old illnesses, old emotions, or old fears and thoughts….

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May 6, 2020

Herban Herb Walk: Chinese Medicinal Herbs in the City

Do your landscaping plants have medicine to offer?

Athene is back with another installment of our AIMC Herbal Pharmacy Video Blog!

People and plants are always in communication- the plants we choose to grow in our yards are often
those that have a medicine to offer us. And, a great many of our common landscaping plants are actually
Chinese medicinal herbs. In this “Herban” walk, we explore the medicinal Chinese Herbs growing in
downtown Berkeley.

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