The Power of Herbal Medicine
Herbs are considered food for the body. Throughout history extracts from herb plants, roots, tree bark, leaves and flowers have proven effective in restoring and maintaining health. FOR EVERY DISEASE WE KNOW, GOD PROVIDES A HERB TO GROW!
Extracts are one of the simplest ways to enjoy the goodness of herbs.
What Are Herbal Tinctures?
Tinctures are concentrated herbal extracts that have alcohol as the solvent. An acetum is sometimes defined as “a vinegar tincture” in the tomes, but this is a pretty rare exception.
WHAT DEFINES A TINCTURE?
- Tinctures are concentrated herbal extracts.
- All tinctures are extracts, but not all extracts are tinctures! Alcohol must be the solvent used to extract the herbal properties. If you are using vinegar, glycerine, only water (water used to dilute alcohol is fine), or any menstruum (solvent) other than alcohol, your preparation is an extract, but it is not a tincture. Any spirit may be used, but many herbalists prefer something neutral like vodka so the taste of the herb comes through.
- They can be made with fresh or dried flowers, leaves, roots, barks, or berries. Examples include: dried stevia leaf, vanilla beans, and dried mushrooms.
Herbalists spend from 30 months to three years studying the pharmacology, therapeutics and physio medicine of Western herbal medicine. Constituents found in plants include alkaloids, tannins, astringent properties, glycosides, anthraquinones, resin, volatile oil, mucilage, saponins, triterpenoids, berberine, asparigin, phytosterol and bitter principles just to name a few.
Herbs are metabolised easily by the body, especially the liver, unlike pharmaceutical drugs which interfere with digestion and liver function, creating toxicity and stress on many organs.
The entire physiology is affected by pharmaceutical drugs. Even one tiny drop can create a systemic reaction. I know this from personal experience!
Types of herbal medicine philosophies
- Traditional Western herbal medicine (WHM)
- Traditional Chinese herbal medicine (TCM)
- Traditional Ayurvedic herbal medicine (AHM)
There are many other cultures which have their traditional ways of using herbs but these three philosophies are the best known in our society.