Amazon John Easterling, Leslie Taylor & Dr. Nicole Maxwell

They all shared a dream of a new paradigm for balancing the growing health needs of the world. The lifestyle needs of the indigenous people and environmental sustainability of the rainforest.

John's company now partners with some 14 rainforest communities, which has saved over 300,000 acres of rainforest. As health demands increase in the rest of the world more tribes can enter into this type of partnership, saving even more rainforest land, which would otherwise be despoiled by the cattle, fishing, mining and lumber industries.

As each community is added to the partnership many plants are added to the records with species not available in previously documented communities. As this industry expands, others are pursuing this model, gradually saving a good portion of the Amazon while healing the world.

 Although it has been known for many years the value of the plants of the rainforest, this industry was given a real boost by Dr. Nicole Maxwell, a naturopathic physician, who went to the rainforests in Ecuador in 1947. Deep in the forest she fell and cut herself badly with the machete. Her indigenous guide immediately ran to a tree, chopped open a vine on the tree which oozed a red sap. He gave her a drink and applied on the injured area. The arm healed almost immediately and healed very rapidly with no scars.

Dr Nicole Maxwell - Natureopathic Physician

Witch Doctor's Apprentice

 She returned in 1958 to spend the next 12 years documenting plants. She gained confidence of the tribes and extracted information from them. She knew that each healer was like a walking encyclopedia and the information he possessed would be lost to the world if it was not passed to the next healer. She said it was like burning a library. She shared her information with John Easterling and later returned to the rain forest with him while she was in her nineties.

Amazon John Easterling

had been importing many of the crafts of the indigenous, and had a close relationship with several of these tribes. He had hepatitis C that compromised his liver and arrived on one trip barely able move. The natives made him a tea and soon he was healed of many years of fighting that illness. As his business, Amazon Herbs, expands the harvesting expands to the neighboring tribes which offer other healing herbs that grow in their particular area.

Amazon John
Another early leader in discovering and reviewing the power of the plants in the Amazon was Leslie Taylor. She had cancer and she was researching alternative AIDs and cancer therapies in Europe. She founded the Raintree company to make this available to the world. She catalogued over 100 healing plants in her book and on the Internet, Herbal Secrets of the Amazon.

The rainforest value to the world is:

1. It provides a natural alternative to prescription drugs and antibiotics.

2. Helps the indigenous support themselves in the same sustainable lifestyle they've enjoyed for thousands of years.

3. Helps preserve the rainforest for us during this critical time. It affects the air we breathe, the health we enjoy, and once lost cannot be retrieved.

As a business the sustainable use of rainforest land is more profitable than any of its present uses:

Used as Cattle culture that can produce $60 per year per acre.

Used for timber harvesting it can provide $400 per year per acre.

Both of these leave behind devastation and long-term destruction. However, the harvesting of medicinal plants can bring $2500 per year per acre for the natives who live on the land.

Over 200,000 acres of rainforest are burned every day. The Amazon which represents over half of the remaining rainforest on Earth is mostly in Brazil. It also contains 20% of all the world's freshwater.