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Iridology is a wonderful system and a useful tool for analysis. Every part in the body has a corresponding zone in the iris. The top of the body corresponds to the top of the iris as the lower part of the body does to the lower part of the iris.

For example, the zone for the leg, feet and toes is found in the bottom of the iris. The outermost part of the body ' the skin ' has a corresponding zone in the outer part of the iris, while the innermost part of the iris around the pupil indicates the area of the innermost part of the body, namely the digestive system.

The left iris reveals the left side of the body, the right iris the right side of the body. Through the study of iridology we can gain an insight into not only the physical strengths and weaknesses of the body, but also the emotional balance of the individual.

The iris is very rich in nerve endings and is on the information highway between the brain and all other parts of the body. If an iridologist looked at a mark or almond-shaped lesion in an iris, they could determine the level of healing going on in that region by the depth of the mark or lesion.

In iridology, the sodium ring (a thick milky white ring that appears around the outside of the iris) basically shows that the body is calcifying: there is hardening occurring in the body. This can also be an indication of arthritis. Some Bush Essences used to address the problems associated with a sodium ring are: Tall Mulla Mulla, which is an excellent essence for improving circulation; and Isopogon, which assists memory. Emotionally, Hibbertia can be thought of for mental rigidity.

When the lymphatic system is becoming sluggish, white cotton ball-like fluffs called tophi occur in the outside of the iris. They are most commonly seen in the lung and bronchial areas of the iris. When these marks are seen it is generally a very good idea to reduce the amount of fats in the diet, especially diary products. Bush iris in particular should be thought of in treating the lymphatic system. It will invariably correct a sluggish or retrograde lymphatic system, with marked benefit to the individual.

Nerve rings indicate stress and tension that is not being released from the body; rather this tension is stored in the area where the nerve ring occurs in the iris. Tightening or even cramping of the tissues will often occur in that area of the body.

Stored emotional stress can also create nerve rings and these rings generally commence in the digestive organ area of the iris chart. To help treat the stored stress that these rings indicate, think of Crowea, as it works on tight, tense and cramped muscles; Black-eyed Susan to slow down and relax; Gymea Lily for tension around the spine and neck; and Emergency essence for headaches.

One of the major reasons for health imbalances from a purely physical point of view  is the reabsorption of metabolic wastes through the bowel wall into the bloodstream. Bottlebrush works on both physical holding on (constipation) as well as helping to let go emotionally, which is usually why someone is constipated in the first place.

Where there is prolonged diarrhoea, Kapok Bush should be thought of, although in many cases, diarrhoea can be a sign of irritation in the bowel as a result of constipation in which case Crowea will help to restore good muscular tone and integrity to the colon.

This is an edited extract from Ian White's book  Australian Bush Flower Healing used with permission from Australian Bush Flower Essences, all rights reserved. Ian White is a fifth-generation herbalist, and has been practising naturopathy and homoeopathy for over twenty years. Today his Australian Bush Flower Essence remedies are used and prescribed by healers, families, naturopaths and medical doctors. To learn more about Australian Bush Flower Essences visit www.ausflowers.com.au