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Herbal Tinctures

Medicinal Herbs Made Easy  ~One of the best natural remedies in the herbal medicine world is a traditional herbal tincture.

Herbal tinctures, or herbal extracts are based on traditional methods of cold herbal extraction.  This process uses either natural grain alcohol, vegetable glycerin, apple cider vinegar, water or sometimes a combination.

There are advantages to each extraction method.  Many herbs are insoluable in water and without a natural preservative have a limited shelf life.

Unless specifically noted or requested, most herbal tinctures are natural grain alcohol extractions.  Alcohol is able to extract the medicinal herbal properties better than glycerin or apple cider vinegar.

If you can't drink alcohol, then consider making or buying one made with one of the other extraction methods.


Herbal Tincture Advantages

*   Enables maximum extraction of vitamins, minerals and herbal constituents.
*   All herbal parts can be used, fresh or dried, roots, flowers or leaf.
*   Natural herbs can be combined with other botanicals or herbs.
*   Alcohol extraction extends shelf life to about 1-6 years.
*   All herbal properties are rapidly absorbed into the bloodstream.
*   Convenient to carry with you.
*   Easy to swallow.

Herbs in pill form have been known to leave your body intact if the coating doesn't melt, which means you've not retained their beneficial properties.

Capsule herbs are supposed to disintegrate where they are digested in the stomach, which takes longer for the herbs to reach the blood stream.   Sometimes the capsules pass through your body and are eliminated without having dissolved, which means you miss all of the beneficial herbal properties.

The Herbal tinctures are taken from an eye dropper where the drops are placed under the tongue, they by pass the stomach and go immediately into the blood stream, where they can do the most good.

Organic Tinctures ~ Make Your Own

This is a simple process that can easily be done at home with a basic familiarity of which herbs you want to use.

Please remember that just because it's a natural herb, does not guarantee that it is appropriate as a medicinal herb or that it should be taken internally.  There are many attractive, common natural plants that are poisonous.  Or sometimes part of the plant is a medicinal herb and another part of the herb is toxic.

So please exercise caution if you wildcraft herbs yourself.

This is a very easy way to make a tincture and the result is very potent medicinal herbal tincture.  This recipe can be made to any size you like or to a different herb to alcohol ratio.

*   1 quart glass jar with a lid.
*   Natural alcohol such as vodka.
*   Fill jar about 1/4 full with dried or fresh herbs.
*   Fill the remainder of jar with a natural DRINKABLE alcohol or vodka.
*   Shake several times daily.
*   Leave in cool, dark place such as a cupboard.
*   Allow extraction for a minimum of 2 weeks, I like longer.
*   Strain herbal material and compost.

That's the most basic recipe.  Keep your strained tincture in that glass jar or distribute to smaller dark glass bottles and keep out of direct sunlight.

Never use plastic to extract your herbs or to store your herbal tinctures.

The ratios that you would use for dried herb versus fresh herbs is different.  There are many excellent books with more details if this is something that interests you.


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Organic Herbal Tinctures ~ Buy Them.

Some of the things to consider when buying herbal tinctures are:

*   Make sure that all ingredients are listed on the label.
*   Are the ingredients organic or wildcrafted.  Or do they say.
*   Is the extraction alcohol, glycerin or apple cider vinegar.
*   Does water represent a significant percentage of the tincture.

To reduce costs and increase profit many manufacturers offer herbal tinctures with a high water content.  Remember that these tinctures will be less potent than ones without water.

How To Use Tinctures

*   Straight from the eye dropper.
*   Blended into tea, juice or smoothies.
*   With yogurt, soup or other food.

Types Of Tinctures

There are two types of tinctures:

Herbal tinctures extracted from just  One Single Herb.

Herbal Tincture Combinations  which offer extractions from multiple herbs.

The multiple herbal blends generally target the beneficial properties for the relief of particular symptoms.

Once you try experimenting with some of the commercial tinctures available and become more familiar with which herbs suit your needs, then isn't it time to consider various herbal blends?  Truly the sky is the limit, consider some of these examples:

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Dogs, horses, cats, birds and many other animals can and do take herbal tinctures.  Not all tinctures are appropriate for each animal, so it's best to buy from a company that specializes in herbal medicines for animals.  Such as Native Remedies, noted below:

If you're new to the benefitis and convenience of herbal tinctures, you might be surprised how many different types there are for animals.  Here are just a few examples.

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Most animals don't object too much to taking herbal tinctures and some actually are eager to take them right from the eye dropper.

A good way for them to take them is mixed with their food or on a treat that will soak in the tincture.  That better way to get the medicinal herbs into them?

There are many herbs that are toxic to animals, so make sure you dont' experiment.  Just because it's good for you, does not mean it's good for your dog or horse.

Enjoy your jouney into the world of herbal tinctures, you'll wonder how you managed without them!


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Copyright All Rights Reserved 2010 -2012 Toni Reita ND

Under the current FDA laws in the united States, it is illegal to make any medical claims for any health supplements or any other natural product.   This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to make any medical claims, diagnose, treat, cure, prevent or mitigate any physical or mental condition, nor to prescribe any substance.  This site provides helpful natural information and is supported by compensation from quality advertisers and affiliate relationships.