Ancient Health at Home: Making Tinctures

| 11/30/2011 5:05:07 PM

J.PattonMaking tinctures at home may sound intimidating, but it is as simple as following a simple recipe from a cookbook.

First, though, let’s answer an important question: What is a tincture?

Tinctures, by definition, are plant extracts preserved with diluted alcohol or glycerin. They are generally made from the root, plant and/or flowers of herbs. Tinctures assimilate effectively into your bloodstream and provide more potent treatment for a longer amount of time than when compared with simply using dried herbs.

11-30-2011-ancient health mortar and pestle
Perhaps one of humanity's oldest pairings, the mortar and pestle are a versatile duo. Make a tincture by crushing dried herbs in your mortar.

The type of herbs you use in your tincture all depend on what health benefits you are hoping to reap. A passionflower tincture can be added to milk to help aid in sleep. An echinacea tincture is believed to stimulate the immune system and protect you from the cold and flu, and a black cohosh root tincture is sometimes used to relieve those pesky symptoms of menopause.

Vodka is one of the more popular spirits when it comes to concocting tinctures at home, but the type you use really just depends on your taste. If you are using dried herbs, make sure your liquor of choice is at least 80-proof.