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Lā‘au Lapa‘au

Part of "Growing Food"

     Lā‘au lapa‘au is solving the problems of body, mind and spirit. In Hawaiian healing the mental is not separate from the spiritual and physical. Rely on spiritual insight and most of all, guidance from Akua.

      -Traditional healer “Papa” Henry Auwae


Lā‘au lapa‘au (medicinal plant treatment) is one of several traditional Hawaiian healing arts. Other healing arts include ‘ai pono (healthy eating), ho‘oponopono (emotional/spiritual balance), and lomilomi (massage therapy).


As with many traditional Hawaiian practices, lā‘au lapa‘au requires a holistic approach of body, mind, and spirit for optimal healing results. The knowledge of lāʻau lapaʻau is shared by past generations that can be traced back over a thousand years.  


Today the techniques and plant-based remedies are used by many as alternatives and complements to western medical approaches.  


In this segment you will hear from cultural practitioners of lā‘au lapa‘au, and learn which plants to include in your garden that have healing properties. 


To start this segment visit the video link to Aunty Lynette Paglinawan's presentation at UH West O‘ahu and continue on with the links that follow.

> Back to Course 4: Growing Food

Useful Links:
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45-minute workshop talk story session with Aunty Lynette Paglinawan on her practice of lā‘au lapa‘au.

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Kaua‘i-based cultural practitioner Sean Chun shares the healing properties and protocols for lā‘au lapa‘au. A video by Kamehameha Publishing.

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Important Lā‘au Lapa‘au Plants in Hawai‘i

Ke Ola Magazine article describing the practice of lā‘au lapa‘au and some of its key plants.

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VIDEO: Levon Ohai Presentation for UH Mānoa

The late kahuna Levon Ohai, loved by many for his generosity in sharing 'ike, talks story about lā‘au lapa‘au.

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VIDEO:Growing Māmaki with George Kahumoku, Jr.

Learn how to care for and cultivate māmaki and learn about this traditional 

cultural plant.

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VIDEO: Benefits of 'Ōlena (Tumeric)

A short KHON-TV video on the health benefits and history of 'Ōlena in Hawai‘i.

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