Hero Health


Foraging’s Healing Power

One can argue that while technology and social media have made our lives richer and more connected, it has also generated a great deal of unnecessary drama impacting our state of mind. We are starting to see the dark underbelly of always being on with higher rates of depression. As a result, getting off the grid is becoming increasingly popular. We see this in the wide spectrum of outdoor activities gaining popularity, from trekking and camping to more extreme forms of getting out there.

Foraging, or the primordial act of searching for goods for sustenance and survival is striking a chord. We see this in the popularity of foraging activities, raw food, extreme off-the-grid living and the rise of culture of unfiltered rawness. There is something in foraging that reminds us of the essence of the human condition, a code for being a certain type of rugged individual that can survive during rough times, and as stated above, as a response to the sensory overload dumped on us by rapacious social media culture.

Foraging hits home because it strikes a unique balance between two things we seek in our modern condition. The first is a sense of agency, destiny and control. We are literally out there in the woods or in our local park looking for stuff, with no one on our backs. This stream ties in beautifully with one of our other modern-day obsessions, which is foodie culture. Through foraging we’re also developing a more immediate relationship with what we eat, instilling a better appreciation of dietary contributions from what we find. The vegan and plant-based movement and foraging strongly overlap. This calming element is balanced with a tougher, more rugged, survivor vibe which speaks to a generation that has embraced extreme sports and more. To be out in nature is to be a winner, and this is something we all want.

Big and small, agile pharma can learn a lot from the foraging movement. It can learn about the hunger to deliver things in a simpler fashion. It can also be reminded about the primordial role of nature in healing, beginning with power botanicals. Pharma can also learn to explore more dynamic ways to enhance the patient journey, including learning activities, instilling a sense of discovery, experimentation that mimic the naturally challenging and soothing effect of being out in the wild. To forage is to ultimately to find something powerfully hidden, and that is the power of self, still in many ways the most powerful catalyst in wellness and wellbeing.