Artwork for podcast Herbs with Rosalee
Holistic Cancer Care with Chanchal Cabrera
Episode 127th June 2023 • Herbs with Rosalee • Rosalee de la Forêt
00:00:00 00:56:58

Share Episode


Cancer. The very word can strike fear in the heart—and unfortunately, it touches many of us at some point in our lives, whether directly or indirectly through family and friends. 

But cancer… and herbs? What role can herbs possibly play in a big, scary, potentially deadly  disease like that? 

If you’re faced with a cancer diagnosis, what can you do to take control of your journey and feel empowered? 

Just as important, what steps can you take to help prevent cancer in the first place?

These are just some of the issues covered in today’s episode with Chanchal Cabrera—an herbalist with 35 years of clinical practice who specializes in holistic oncology. It was so good! And Chanchal’s new book, Holistic Cancer Care, needs to be on everyone’s bookshelf. It’s an impressive and helpful book for anyone who’s ever been touched by cancer, and even those who want to prevent it.

By the end of this episode, you’ll know:

► What is patient-centered medicine, and why is it so vitally important when crafting a treatment plan?

► Is it true that lymphatic herbs shouldn’t be used by cancer patients? Why or why not?

► Why sunscreen doesn’t give you the protection you might think it does (and what you can do instead)

► How can herbal medicine be included in cancer care, and what are some specific herbs that have been researched for this purpose?

► Depending on the treatments selected and the cancer itself, patients may suffer with radiation burns and/or neuropathic pain. As a listener, you’ll also receive free access to not one, but two downloadable recipe cards from Chanchal for soothing herbal creams.

Here is one of my favorite takeaways from our conversation: 

“I see the role of a herbalist as an incredible opportunity to connect people with plants in such a way that they actually care enough about the environment the plants grow in to do something active to help the environment. Really, I see herbalism as an extremely effective form of activism and I consider myself an environmental warrior, an environmental activist through my herbal medicine work.”

For those who don’t already know her, Chanchal is a medical herbalist and has been in clinical practice for 35 years with a specialty in holistic oncology. She is the author of Fibromyalgia: A Journey towards Healing and her latest book, Holistic Cancer Care: An Herbal Approach to Preventing Cancer, Helping Patients Thrive during Treatment, and Minimizing the Risk of Recurrence, launched in April. She held the faculty chair in Botanical Medicine at the Boucher Institute of Naturopathic Medicine in New Westminster 2004-2016. She serves on the board of advisors of Dominion Herbal College in Burnaby, on the editorial board of Medical Herbalism clinical newsletter, and she publishes widely in professional journals and lectures internationally on medical herbalism, nutrition, and health.

Chanchal is also a certified Shinrin Yoku (forest bathing) practitioner, a certified Master Gardener and a certified Horticulture Therapist. She lives on Vancouver Island, British Columbia where she and her husband manage Innisfree Farm and Botanic Garden, a 7 acre internationally registered botanic garden specializing in food and medicine plants, and where they host apprenticeships in sustainable food production and herbal medicine. The farm also hosts Gardens without Borders, a federally registered not-for-profit society established to run the botanic garden and provide horticulture therapy.

If you’d like to hear more from Chanchal, which I highly recommend, then head to the show notes where you can get an easy link for her website and social media channels. You can also find the transcript for this episode in the show notes.

I’m beyond thrilled to share our conversation with you today!


Get full show notes and more information at:

For more behind-the-scenes of this podcast, follow @rosaleedelaforet on Instagram!

The secret to using herbs successfully begins with knowing who YOU are. Get started by taking my free Herbal Jumpstart course when you sign up for my newsletter.

If you enjoy the Herbs with Rosalee podcast, we could use your support! Please consider leaving a 5-star rating and review and sharing the show with someone who needs to hear it!

On the podcast, we explore the many ways plants heal, as food, as medicine, and through nature connection. Each week, I focus on a single seasonal plant and share trusted herbal knowledge so that you can get the best results when using herbs for your health.

Learn more about Herbs with Rosalee at


Rosalee is an herbalist and author of the bestselling book Alchemy of Herbs: Transform Everyday Ingredients Into Foods & Remedies That Heal and co-author of the bestselling book Wild Remedies: How to Forage Healing Foods and Craft Your Own Herbal Medicine. She's a registered herbalist with the American Herbalist Guild and teaches many popular online courses. Read about how Rosalee went from having a terminal illness to being a bestselling author in her full story here