Clinical herbalist, nutritionist, apothecary and professional health educator, her diverse herb practice is rooted in the community she serves as the proprietor and apothecary of Mrs. Thompson’s Herbs in downtown Eugene Oregon.
She first learned herbalism and nutrition through guidance from a nutritionist to recover her own health from a medically incurable condition. Apprenticing next with a natural foods chef and then studying through the National Institute of Nutritional Education set her on a path as a professional natural foods chef. Weekend training and practice in trail-side botany, brought her to work as an interpretive guide in the United States National Park Service.
Her formal education in herbalism began at the Oregon School of Herbal Studies, then at Brighid’s Academy of Healing Arts and in a clinical internship with Master herbalist and Druid Gina McGarry. She has also received tutelage from Naturalist and Scottish Elder Allister Brebner and guidance from Scottish Author and writing mentor Mary Beith.
For over thirty years now, Heather has been a health consultant, teacher and lecturer.
In 1994 she opened the herb apothecary Mrs. Thompson’s Herbs, Gifts & Folklore in the United States. In 2000 she opened the herb apothecary Lusrach in the Highlands of Scotland, founded the Academy of Scottish Herbalism and began hosting guided cultural herb tours in Scotland. In 2010 she began teaching The Village Herbalist Independent Herb Study Course. She has taught in community colleges, parks and recreation programs, in universities, herb schools and at herb conferences.
Heather is a formulator of exclusive herb products both for Mrs. Thompson’s Herbs and contracted by other herb product manufacturers. Educated and practiced in herb formulation, each herb she chooses for a formula has a unique and specific function, bringing about gentle but rapid and targeted effects.
Also trained in organoleptic testing of herbs, including accurate botanical identification and herb parts used, she inspects and tests all herbs, herb extracts and products for Mrs. Thompson’s. Herbs are assessed for aroma, flavor, appearance and texture, and Heather is able to assess the quality of soil they were grown in, if they had the right amount of sun or rain, if the harvest was timely, done gently, if they were extracted correctly, and how old they are, much in the way that a wine expert does.
Heather has an approachable, compassionate and authentic presence and a deep knowledge of health, healing and herbalism. With a specialty in herbs and foods that heal, and in healing diets, she has an encyclopedic knowledge of herb chemistry and nutrients, and the health concerns that they address. As an herbalist, her focus is to educate on the practical uses for herbs in everyday life. As a professional health educator, she assists with understanding why specific health concerns happen, how to increase body vitality and what actions to take to improve health. As a former professional chef she has experience to share in creating meals that turn good nutrition into beautiful and delicious healing for the body and soul. Having dedicated her life to sharing this wealth of knowledge, she has assisted thousands in reclaiming their own health process, in giving healing aid to their families and sometimes in becoming professional herbalists themselves.
She has achieved international recognition in her field, teaching and lecturing internationally, and is consulted by Acupuncturists, Chiropractors, Massage Therapists, Physical Therapists, Naturopaths, Midwives, lay and professional Herbalists, Sports Trainers and Medical Doctors, working in conjunction with them to help you achieve your healthcare goals.