Health

PODCAST: In herbs we trust

Neglected by the health care system, many immigrants are finding relief in medicinal herbs

December 9, 2017
Medicinal herbs for almost every type of emotional and physical health problem can be found in botánicas, little emporiums spread all around New York. [Image courtesy of Camila Osorio]

After spending years in the biodiverse jungles of Bolivia and tropical islands of the Caribbean, Ina Vandebroek came to New York City to study plants. To find them, she didn’t visit the parks or upstate forests. She went to the Bronx. More specifically, she went to botánicas, suppliers of amulets, candles, religious articles and hundreds of fresh and dried plants. There, Ina discovered a whole community of immigrants and Latinos who rely on these stores as an alternative health care system. An immigrant herself, she also found her own place with them.

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About the Author

Emiliano Rodríguez Mega is a science journalist from Mexico City who covers Latin America and more. He likes to tell the stories of the people behind the science, those who are affected by it, and those who use it to manipulate us. His work has been published in the Associated Press, Scientific American, Undark, and the news sections of Science and Nature.

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