Starting From Traditional Roots

They say that the more you know, the more you know you don’t know! My herbal journal began with a feeling of discontent and casting a wide net. In 2017 I attended the Traditional Roots conference in Portland, OR as I was searching for something “more”. I was particularly inspired by the following classes and teachers:

traditional roots conference 2017 logo
Traditional Roots 2017

Cedar Mountain Herb School

My interest in these classes lead me to local instructor Suzanne Tabert of the Cedar Mountain Herb School and Bastyr University. I completed several 11-week internships with Suzanne, learning about herbal medicine, wildcrafting, and making medicine. It was a blissful time to spend the sunny months in the beautiful pacific northwest forests with like minded souls. As my interest in herbal medicine grew so did my appetite for knowledge. I decided to take a break from my work in user experience to study the topic deeply. I decided to undertake a second master’s degree because the high quality of research in such a program is important to me.

Maryland University of Integrative Health

MUIH logo
MUIH logo

I graduated from the Masters program in Therapeutic Herbalism at MUIH in December 2021. My herbal philosophy is heavily based in a philosophy of Western Herbal Medicine taught at MUIH, in which the “clinical assessment is characterized by a holistic, biopsychosocial approach with treatment aimed at supporting or augmenting vis medicatrix naturae (the healing power of nature)” (Snow, 2016, p. 55). This philosophy emphasizes practices that enrich patient care in the following ways: engaging with patient narrative; practitioner collaboration; and the facilitation of patient empowerment. In engaging with the patient narrative, the practitioner takes an active listening role as they share conversation that explores the entire patient experience. The practitioner works with the patient to collaborate on diagnoses and treatment protocols. The goal of which is the patient feeling empowered in their health outcomes. These practices will strengthen the patient-provider relationship, and indeed this relationship is a concept that contributes to the working definition of Integrative Health. I carry this philosophy and these practices with me as I continue on my wellness journey.

MUIH Coursework

CourseID Course Term   CourseID Course Term
MUIH 500 University Orientation Fall 2017   ISCI 610b Intro to Scientific Writing Sum 2018
MUIH 550 Academic Research & Scholarship Fall 2017   HRB 635c Field Botany for Herbalists Aut 2018
HRB 600 Fundamentals of Herbal Medicine Spr 2018   HRB 735a Clinical Theory in Practice I Aut 2018
ISCI 547a Physiology I Spr 2018   App 607 Introduction to the Healing Presence Aut 2018
ISCI 631 Intro to CIH Spr 2018   HRB 735b Clinical Theory in Practice II Spr 2019
IHED 637 Principles & Practices of Health Behavior Spr 2018   NUTR 665 Dynamics of Food & Healing Spr 2019
HRB 605 Materia Medica I Sum 2018   HRB 620a Herbal Therapeutic I Spr 2019
HRB 622 Herbal Pharmacy Sum 2018   HRB 705 Material Medica II Spr 2019
HRB 790 E-Portfolio Sum 2018   HRB 620b Herbal Therapeutics II Sum 2019
HRB 791 E*Portfolio Final Sum 2019   HRB 781 Research in Botanical Pharmacognosy Sum 2021
HRB 641 Safety of Herbal Medicine Spr 2021   NUTR 672 Mindful Eating & Nourishment Aut 2021
IHM 601 Telehealth for Wellness Professionals Aut 2021   HRB 690c Internship Aut 2021

Next Steps

My time at MUIH has ended, but my journey continues. As a capstone to my MS degree, I have written a chapter on herbal medicine and diabetes (HRB 690c). This chapter is a cornerstone to a book that I’m writing on integrative medicine and diabetes!  I think the last few artifacts that I have included in my portfolio (book chapter and mindful eating & diabetes program executive summary) address some of the areas of MUIH values where I was weak (Community and Discernment). I plan to turn the mindful eating and diabetes executive summary (NUTR 672) into a remote, month long class available from my company website.

My Professional Goals

I am an entrepreneur and the founder and CEO of a Diabetes wellness company with an emphasis on Complementary & Alternative Medicine and Herbs. As I continue my herbal journey I plan to build an app that serves the Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) community. I want to include services such as community forums, video education, recipes, Diabetes news, and a 10-minute a day program that helps people manage their blood glucose levels through complementary and alternative practices. I plan to work with herbalists to development and sell a line of herbal products for people living with T2DM. I also want to provide access to certified Diabetes educators. Giving clients access to trained coaches through mobile apps has been shown to reduce A1c values, which reduces the risk of diabetes-related complications (Kumar et al, 2018). With masters degrees in Information Science and Therapeutic Herbalism, I believe that I’m in a unique position to succeed. The values that I have learned at MUIH will help me on my way to making my dream come true!

Selected Artifacts

The artifacts below represent important milestones in my herbal journey of botanical medicine. When I began the program at MUIH my interests and studies were definitely more broad than they are now. That is reflected in the papers that I have selected which focus on larger patient topics and more general herbal medicine.

As I started to explore deeper I did a good amount of research on the topics of Rosacea and skin inflammation. However, as I have journeyed through the program and matured as an herbalist my passion for Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus research emerged. I have spent the last 12 months of my time in the program focused on supporting the health of clients with T2DM. The later examples that I have selected to display on my portfolio specifically highlight that focus.

A lavender field

Lavender Monograph

I produced a Lavender monograph for HRB 600. This monograph was built over 14 weeks as I learned about the history of Lavender, its phytochemical makeup, its phytotherapy potential, and preparation and dosing instructions. Another big challenge was learning where to find authoritative sources to herbal questions. This monograph also compares […]

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Laptop and chart communication tools

Communication Tools

I wrote an article about provider-provider communication for ISCI 631. In this paper I introduce the topic of provider-provider communication from a western herbal medicine perspective. I define the term “placebo effect” and provide a background of how the phenomenon has been studied. Researching this paper really gave me an insiders […]

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Create a personal health record (PHR)

Personal Health Records And Health Information Sharing Behavior

This is a literature review and research proposal I wrote for ISCI 610b on Personal Health Records and health information sharing behavior. My paper on patient-provider communication inspired me to think deeply about the artifacts created during communication. This paper is a review of the relevant literature on the topic and […]

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A blank field journal

Field Journals

These are my field journals from two of my courses at MUIH: HRB 635c Field Journal, taken on my exploration of East Texas edible & medicinal plants with Mark Vodderbrugen and the Native Plant Society of Texas HRB 635a Field Journal, taken on my intensive week course in the Appalachian Mountains of Ohio […]

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Pills on a leaf

Review Paper: Diabetes Research in CAM

This is a review paper I wrote for HRB 620b about the latest news articles on Diabetes Research in Complementary & Alternative Medicine. I decided to focus on 3 new promising techniques researchers are investing to improve glycemic management: (1)Bariatric Surgery (2)Intermittent fasting. (3)Herbal medicine. In this review, I provide the […]

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hale and holistic approach to t2dm

Whitepaper: Using Kitchen Herbs to Support Wellness in T2DM

Kitchen herbs This is a white paper I wrote for HRB 620b about Using Kitchen Herbs to Support Wellness in Type 2 Diabetics. I decided to focus on 3 new promising techniques researchers are investing to improve glycemic management: (1)Bariatric Surgery (2)Intermittent fasting. (3)Herbal medicine. In this review, I provide the […]

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Diabetes group classroom

Diabetes Community Class Outline

One of the goals for starting my business supporting people with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus is to provide educational materials. Current statistics from the American Diabetes Association show that only 6% of new diagnosed diabetics take a class about their chronic illness. This document describes a Diabetes Community Class that I would […]

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Mindful eating

Mindfulness & T2DM Class Executive Summary

Halebee’s 4-week Mindful Eating & Diabetes program will introduce you to the practice of mindful eating. Over the course the month you will non-judgmentally reflect on your own eating habits, complete exercises to help you deeply get in touch with your mind and body, and practice mindful eating techniques. This […]

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Halebee Berry Balm Shrub label

Berry Balm Medicinal Shrub: a product proposal

Founded in 2018, has provided counseling, education, and support for clients living with Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM). As part of our growing services, we are developing new product offerings. Our newest formulation is a diabetic wellness product concept to support wellness and resilience in clients living with the […]

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Basic Diabetes Education

Book Chapter: Herbal Medicine and Diabetes

The focus of my internship (HRB 690c) with Suzanne Tabert at Cedar Mountain Herb School was writing this book chapter on herbal medicine and diabetes. This chapter is the cornerstone of the book on Complementary and Alternative Medicine and Diabetes that I am writing to publish in 2022. My target […]

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