Plant medicine new frontier

STAN MALEYMidwest Times
Jennie Haste from Qi Herbs and her dog Pixel.
Camera IconJennie Haste from Qi Herbs and her dog Pixel. Credit: Stan Maley

Up here in Gero we live in something of a safe bubble compared to other States and countries, and we need to be thankful for that.

Much was said in 2020 about health and wellbeing, with COVID-19 taking out masses of the weak and elderly.

Memory loss is one of the saddest things I see, especially sad for the families. It was in this context I met with Jennie Haste.

“Give me the herbs Jennie,” was my first thought when I saw what she was up to over there at Strathalbyn.

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Jennie is the owner and creator of Qi herbs and plant pharmacy and as my readers know, I like to help promote local people having a go at a business idea in Geraldton.

My motto is “keep it local”.

Jennie explained that Qi was pinched from the Chinese, meaning “vital force”. That means forming part of and connecting with every living entity.

“It’s a short word and fits on my labels,” she said.

Jennie has a few medical qualifications, including Western herbal medicine and earlier as a radiographer, sonographer and ophthalmology technician. Not to mention farming and four-wheel driving way back.

“I was so mesmerised by what plant medicine was capable of,” she said. “It became an obsession to share it, as I believe it’s the first of its kind in Australia. Plant medicine is relatively safe, totally natural, very nutritious and works in gentle harmony with our bodies. It can be used to treat both acute and chronic symptoms or just to maintain good health.”

Western herbal medicine pinches the most researched plant medicine from all over the world. Jennie buys organic plant powders in Australia. The plants that make these powders originally were imported from all over the planet. It is estimated there are 18,000 plants with a medicinal use and Jennie stocks more than 100 of these.

It is only in recent times that there has been an increase in interest in the plants of native Australia that the First Nations people used for their medicine.

“Qi herbs work with certified organic and wild crafted plant powders using cold percolation to extract the compounds and active constituents from them,” Jennie said. “These extracts form our herbal medicines.”

A different blend of pharmacy-grade ethanol and filtered rain water is used for the percolation for each herb and this is the optimum method of extraction. Alcohol gives herbal extracts an indefinite shelf life, and it is in such small quantities it won’t affect anyone.

Jennie says “choose your physician and I will give you the opportunity to treat yourself”.

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