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Author Topic: Health: Tincture questions  (Read 2125 times)

Naturebound

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Tincture questions
« on: September 26, 2016, 03:11:45 pm »
Hi! So, I'm researching how to make tinctures. My goal is to find healthy alternatives or preventative action versus modern medicine. I am in my 30's and am noticing the increasing dependencies on medication for my family and I. I'm talking about over the counter pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids ect... Can I make different tinctures with rhodiola rosa root, white willow bark, valerian root, echinacea, stinging nettle, and skullcap? I like tinctures because the shelf life is up to 3 years and they are easy to make and take... However, I'm wondering if this method is suitable for those particular herbs. I'm also curious on the effectiveness of taking tinctures? Does anyone have experience with using them? Also any suggestions on what to use as an anti-inflammatory for arthritis? Many Thanks!
« Last Edit: May 07, 2019, 02:41:11 pm by RandallS »

Jenett

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Re: Tincture questions
« Reply #1 on: September 26, 2016, 04:06:58 pm »
Quote from: Naturebound;196683
Hi! So, I'm researching how to make tinctures. My goal is to find healthy alternatives or preventative action versus modern medicine. I am in my 30's and am noticing the increasing dependencies on medication for my family and I. I'm talking about over the counter pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids ect... Can I make different tinctures with rhodiola rosa root, white willow bark, valerian root, echinacea, stinging nettle, and skullcap?

 
So, the thing about tinctures is that herbs release different materials in water than in alcohol, so some herbs, the relevant chemicals come out in tinctures, and in some they come out in infusions. (And some plants, you get different chemicals in tincture than in tea, so it depends what you want them to do.)

Technically, you can tincture nettle, but that's one where everyone I've talked to only uses it as a tea, so mileage also varies a lot. (I believe in that case it's because there's a bunch of nutritional benefit in the tea that doesn't come through in the tincture, and why not get the other good stuff in the plant while you're doing it?)  

For a starting place, Mountain Rose Herbs has some good information on historic and modern uses of herbs - if they only say it's used as a tea, or as a tincture, or preferably as one, that's a pretty decent indication.

(Note, however, that their info doesn't have details about cross-reactions with medications, specific medical conditions, and doesn't contain the most recent research necessarily, so you want to check those things in other resources. They do include references on some pages for additional research.)

You'll also want to make sure you cross-check the actual Latin species names, not rely on common names, since common names can vary in different places and sources.

A couple of other things to consider: if allergies are an issue, a surprising number of plants are related to ragweed (the one I absolutely avoid is chamomile, but there are others) so if ragweed allergies are in the mix, check before using things.

Not everyone responds to a given plant the same way - for example, about 1 in 10 people does not get sleepy when given valerian. (I happen to be one of them: the herbalist I was seeing who told me this had me use Jamaican Dogwood instead, which is not safe if you're considering pregnancy or with some other conditions, but works well otherwise.)

I've generally found that tinctures have worked well for me for low-key chronic issues and for reducing the number of more acute needs but do not work as well for more immediate needs (so chronic inflammation or lung issues, yes, but not 'ow, I have a headache right now' or 'argh menstrual cramps so bad I can't move', for which I will take ibuprofen or naproxen sodium as needed.)

I also have a handful of chronic things that require daily medication these days, and cross-referencing the possible effects of tinctures (not just 'is this dangerous' but 'does this affect the dosage that might be effective for me') is more complicated than it was a few years ago when I wasn't needing those things, and I'm using tinctures a lot less as a result.
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Naturebound

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Re: Tincture questions
« Reply #2 on: September 26, 2016, 04:52:46 pm »
Quote from: Jenett;196688
So, the thing about tinctures is that herbs release different materials in water than in alcohol, so some herbs, the relevant chemicals come out in tinctures, and in some they come out in infusions. For a starting place, Mountain Rose Herbs has some good information on historic and modern uses of herbs - if they only say it's used as a tea, or as a tincture, or preferably as one, that's a pretty decent indication.

 
Thank you for the much needed advice, suggestions, and experience with tinctures.

Born Again Pagan

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Re: Tincture questions
« Reply #3 on: September 26, 2016, 07:54:15 pm »
Quote from: Naturebound;196683
Hi! So, I'm researching how to make tinctures. My goal is to find healthy alternatives or preventative action versus modern medicine. I am in my 30's and am noticing the increasing dependencies on medication for my family and I. I'm talking about over the counter pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids ect... Can I make different tinctures with rhodiola rosa root, white willow bark, valerian root, echinacea, stinging nettle, and skullcap? I like tinctures because the shelf life is up to 3 years and they are easy to make and take... However, I'm wondering if this method is suitable for those particular herbs. I'm also curious on the effectiveness of taking tinctures? Does anyone have experience with using them? Also any suggestions on what to use as an anti-inflammatory for arthritis? Many Thanks!

 
 L am not sure of the definition of tinctures, but I live in a society where most people attempt to cure their ailments with teas.  I had had diarrhea for months. My Haitian house cleaner heard me on the toilet and called out to me to not flush the toilet util she had examined my outflow. She did so and went around the area and picked 4 or 5 different types of leaves and made what she called a tea which included celery leaves.    I drank that three times in a row and got over the problem. No I have no idea of the names of the leaves she used except oe came from a Javilla tree and another from a Guanabana tree.

Jenett

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Re: Tincture questions
« Reply #4 on: September 26, 2016, 08:49:37 pm »
Quote from: Born Again Pagan;196718
L am not sure of the definition of tinctures, but I live in a society where most people attempt to cure their ailments with teas.

 
Tinctures come from the process of taking an herb (what part depends on the herb - leaf, stem, root, etc.) and immersing it in alcohol for a period of time.

Usually it's higher proof alcohol, because it helps avoid mold and some other issues. I know people who use brandy, vodka, or everclear, which is a very high proof alcohol available in some US states (or the equivalents elsewhere, but I've only ever had to buy the makings in the US.)

Technically, things in water are an infusion or a decoction. (If we're being very precise - which is probably a good idea when we're talking about medicinal applications - tea only happens with infusions using leaves from the tea plant. Every other kind of leaf in water is an infusion under those definitions.)

Infusions are 'put this leaf in water for a length of time'. Decoctions are the same thing, but usually boiled for a while, and more commonly done with roots or things that take a while to release the chemicals you want into the water. How long and at what temperatures again depend on the plants and chemicals you're trying to get.

I was for a while working with an herbalist and taking a thing that had to be boiled for twenty minutes before I strained it and put it in a container I can drink from, which was fine when I was home and not dashing out the door, but a lot more of a problem when travelling or with a noticeably different schedule. (Infusions, on the other hand, are a bit easier to do on the go, as long as you can get access to something that makes boiling water.)

Tinctures, and some other shelf-stable options like pastilles (herb + honey + sometimes a binder to make it stable) are popular in some cases because compliance is a lot easier, or taking something in smaller doses more times a day (a tincture bottle is usually pretty small, and can be easily kept in a bag and taken with maybe a little water when you need to: I have flown with a small bottle in my carry-on liquids bag, for example, though carrying more than a few tinctures would be complicated that way.)
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Holdasown

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Re: Tincture questions
« Reply #5 on: September 29, 2016, 11:25:28 am »
Quote from: Naturebound;196683
Hi! So, I'm researching how to make tinctures. My goal is to find healthy alternatives or preventative action versus modern medicine. I am in my 30's and am noticing the increasing dependencies on medication for my family and I. I'm talking about over the counter pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids ect... Can I make different tinctures with rhodiola rosa root, white willow bark, valerian root, echinacea, stinging nettle, and skullcap? I like tinctures because the shelf life is up to 3 years and they are easy to make and take... However, I'm wondering if this method is suitable for those particular herbs. I'm also curious on the effectiveness of taking tinctures? Does anyone have experience with using them? Also any suggestions on what to use as an anti-inflammatory for arthritis? Many Thanks!


I don't know most of the time off the top of my head but you can research all kinds of stuff like this on the internet. I use a tincture of dandelions in apple cider vinegar to prevent and help pass kidney stones.

Nerys53

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Re: Tincture questions
« Reply #6 on: October 08, 2016, 02:25:09 pm »
Quote from: Naturebound;196683
Hi! So, I'm researching how to make tinctures. My goal is to find healthy alternatives or preventative action versus modern medicine. I am in my 30's and am noticing the increasing dependencies on medication for my family and I. I'm talking about over the counter pain relievers, antihistamines, sleep aids ect... Can I make different tinctures with rhodiola rosa root, white willow bark, valerian root, echinacea, stinging nettle, and skullcap? I like tinctures because the shelf life is up to 3 years and they are easy to make and take... However, I'm wondering if this method is suitable for those particular herbs. I'm also curious on the effectiveness of taking tinctures? Does anyone have experience with using them? Also any suggestions on what to use as an anti-inflammatory for arthritis? Many Thanks!


For osteo-arthritis I use a homemade salve of 100 % pure shea butter and blend in several drops of wintergreen essential oil aromatherapy grade, I make small amounts and use up in a few days, I get both from a german pharmacy online. From them I also buy their valerian tincture which I use for sleep sprinkle a little on wrists and inhale it. This tincture I can not make for the price they sell it, it is more convenient from them.
I do make lots of other herbal/floral tinctures but mostly for fragrance, mood enhamcing
 etc. :)

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