If you had a cold in the thirteenth century, you’d likely stop by your local apothecary to pick up a concoction of herbs and supplements. These days, most of us head to the pharmacy, but Anima Mundi (”world soul” in Latin) is hoping to change that. Driven by a mission to preserve the wisdom of ancient botany, Adriana Ayales founded her company to make it possible for customers to stock a modern apothecary of potent botanicals sourced directly from the rainforests of Central and South America.
Making the farm your pharmacy
When it comes to botanical alchemy, ingredient quality is paramount. Here are three ways Anima Mundi takes special care to source the best nature has to offer—while supporting the local community, too.
- Go to the source: Adriana was born and raised in Costa Rica, a tiny country that’s big on natural resources thanks to its diverse micro-climates. Nearly 6 percent of the world’s biodiversity can be found here, making it a wildcrafting growing paradise!
- Crafted with love: Every ingredient is carefully harvested, dried, and packed with care, then shipped to New York City where each elixir is blended in small batches.
- Fair trade: Ingredients are planted and harvested by native people within Central and South America. Fair-trade practices boost the local economy and benefit the community, too. Anima Mundi helps a new generation access ancient remedies, and it’s all thanks to farmers. “We nourish our relationships by sourcing from them, respecting their pricing, and abiding by fair-trade practices,” Adriana says.
Setting up a home apothecary
This is the fun part! If you’re new to botanicals, these tips from Adriana will help you build a collection.
“People do a lot of the kitchen sink method,” Adriana shares. “They’ll add herbs to their routine without properly knowing about energetics, or not working with a set that’s actually aimed at their needs.” That’s why Anima Mundi’s blends are carefully labeled so customers can easily see what each potion helps target.
Your best bet? Make one change at a time and go slowly. “This way, we listen to our body’s intuition and follow the best dosage combination moving forward.”
Think head to toe
Adriana takes a whole-body approach and stocks her pantry with herbs for every organ system and body part, like the liver, gallbladder, stomach, intestines, heart, and brain.
“I can’t live without essential adaptogens—liver and blood herbs like nettle, burdock, and turmeric, and brain herbs like gotu kola, and brahmi. I could go on and on!” She keeps 50 essentials in her kitchen—everything from mineralizers like moringa and gynostemma, and energizers like ashwagandha, suma, and ginseng—but you can work up slowly!
For beginners, Anima recommends trying Adaptogenic Mushroom Powder (a blend of reishi, lion’s mane, chaga, and others), as mushrooms tend to be easier for the body to digest while still supporting the immune system. Another go-to starter product is the Mangosteen Hibiscus Beauty Powder, which offers a dose of vitamin C and phytonutrients.
Put herbs to work
Many people believe herbs function as a placebo and only work if you think they will, but Adriana is a devoted follower. “We tap into ancient science that’s been there all along,” she says.
So what are you waiting for? Take a look through our digital medicine cabinet and you’re bound to discover something new to try!