How and why to make herbal tincture

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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The tinctures are concentrated extracts based on medicinal herbs and alcohol. These are methods suitable for extracting the beneficial substances contained in them from herbs, so that they can be preserved for a long time. Among the advantages of using herbal tinctures are the ability to be rapidly absorbed by the body and to retain the volatile and semi-volatile components present in herbs for a long time without them undergoing the alterations that could occur due to heat. for example in the course of drying.



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Le tinctures are concentrated extracts based on medicinal herbs and alcohol. These are methods suitable for extracting the beneficial substances contained in them from herbs, so that they can be preserved for a long time. Among the advantages of using herbal tinctures are their ability to be absorbed quickly from the body and to retain the volatile and semi-volatile components present in herbs for a long time without them undergoing the alterations that could occur due to heat, for example during drying.



Let's follow the procedure for the step by step preparation of a herbal tincture, as suggested by WikiHow based on information from “Grow Your Own Drugs” of James Wong “Natural Healing with Herbs” by Humbart Santillo.

1) You must first purchase quality food alcohol. The vodka in this regard it represents one of the best solutions, as it is colorless and because of its non-annoying smell and taste. Vodka can be substituted for brandy, rum or whiskey. In any case, it must be a minimum of 40% alcohol, to preserve the herbs in the best way.

2) You will then have to choose a suitable container. It must be made of glass or ceramic. Plastic and metal containers should be avoided, as such materials may release unwanted and dangerous substances over time. For the preparation of the tincture, gods can be used hermetically sealed glass jars. For its conservation the best solution is represented by dark glass bottles, with a cap that keeps them tightly closed, avoiding air infiltrations, but which makes them easy to use. Each container must be thoroughly cleaned and sterilized before use.

3) La preparation of the tincture it begins with the choice of herbs to use. The quantities of herbs and alcohol to use vary depending on whether you are in the presence of fresh herbs, powdered herbs or dried herbs. In the case of fresh herbs an amount must be used to fill the chosen container, which will be filled with alcohol until the herbs are completely covered. It takes 113 grams of powdered herbs every 473 milliliters of alcohol. In the case of dried herbs, an amount equal to 198 grams per 1 liter of alcohol must be used.



4) At this point the container must be well sealed with its own lid.The container must be placed in the dark, in a cool place, where it must rest for a period ranging from 8 to 30 days, depending on the preparation. Its content will go agitated from time to time. Ideally, this would be done twice a day. It is good to label the container indicating a date, to count the days of permanence of the herbs in alcohol.

5) A good rest time for herbal tinctures it is equal to 2 settimane. You can gradually adjust based on experience or according to the specific recipe followed in a secibda of the herb to be used. After the rest period, the tinctures will have to be filtered, preferably through a kitchen towel thin cotton. The cloth will be placed on a container in which to pour the liquid of the tincture, filtering it, so that the herbs are retained by the cloth. The herbs can be pressed with a wooden spoon to facilitate the operation and at the end the cloth can be wrung out to prevent the liquid from going to waste.

6) At this point the liquid will need to be transferred in dark glass bottle specially prepared to contain the dye. It may be useful to use a funnel to facilitate the operation. It is therefore necessary to close the bottle tightly and label it indicating the date of bottling of the tincture.

7) Conservation and use. A tincture can have a shelf life of up to five years, alcohol being a natural preservative. In any case, depending on the herb used, there may be more precise indications regarding storage. The use of the tincture must be carried out following the advice of an expert, such as a herbalist, to avoid overdoses and incorrect uses.



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8) Some examples of tincture involve the use of Jews such as chamomile, the passiflora, the lime tree or the lavender essence as remedies for insomnia. The tincture based on Blackberry it is considered effective in case of circulation problems. The tincture of sage it is useful during menopause, while the tincture of St. John's wort it is used against depression.

9) La lavender tincture, as indicated by the website Create Farma, can be prepared using 100 grams of lavender flowers per 500 grams of food alcohol at 70 degrees. The lavender flowers must be left to rest in alcohol for a month, before filtering the liquid, to be kept in a well-sealed bottle and away from heat sources. A few drops of lavender tincture in a little sugar can be used for digestive spasms. For external use, a few drops of lavender tincture can be rubbed on the painful area.

10) La calendula tincture is prepared using 100 grams of fresh flowers e 100 milliliters of food alcohol at 50-70%. The flowers must be finely chopped and transferred to a resealable container along with the alcohol. The rest of the tincture must be protected from light for 14 days. On the 15th day the tincture can be filtered and stored in opaque glass bottles. The recipe is taken from book "Calendula. Tips and preparations for beautiful and healthy skin ”by Sven-Jörg Buslau and Corinna Hembd.

Marta Albè

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