Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Herbal tinctures

I first learned about making your own herbal tinctures from my dear friend, LeaAnn. I have long wanted to try it and have FINALLY got around to actually doing it! With all the hub-bub about the swine flu, I decided to make some elderberry tincture. Doug did some research and found that elderberries are extremely effective against the flu. Here are two articles that talk about it's healing properties:



To make any herbal tincture, you need to start with high quality, organic herbs. I ordered my elderberries and elderberry flowers from
Rose Mountain Herbs.
From their website:
Dr. Madeleine Mumcuoglu, of Hadassah-Hebrew University in Israel found that elderberry disarms the enzyme viruses use to penetrate healthy cells in the lining of the nose and throat. Taken before infection, it prevents infection. Taken after infection, it prevents spread of the virus through the respiratory tract. In a clinical trial, 20% of study subjects reported significant improvement within 24 hours, 70% by 48 hours, and 90% claimed complete cure in three days. In contrast, subjects receiving the placebo required 6 days to recover.

Fill a one quart jar 1/3 full with dried berries and then fill the rest of the jar with vodka or brandy:
Place in a cool, dry spot and shake once a day for two weeks.

You may start taking the liquid at the end of the two weeks, but the longer it steeps, the better it is! You may also sweeten the tincture with raw honey or sugar to taste. This tincture is guaranteed to last YEARS.
I am hoping to find some wild elderberries this summer ('cause I'm all about the cheap!). They grow just about everywhere in wooded areas. If you make a tincture from fresh berries you will need to fill your jar a little more than halfway full. Mash the berries slightly and cover with vodka or brandy. Be sure to remove all stems, green berries - they are toxic!


Rachel said...

Thanks for posting this, JoAnn...its one of those many many things I've been wanting to get more "into" myself (herbalism), but its just one more thing added to the pile of "if I have time after x,y, and z"

Have any good books you'd recommend? For a beginner/dilettante like myself, that is?

JoAnnC. said...

We take a lot of herbal supplements via capsules. I learned about various herbal remedies due to whatever ailment we were suffering through. Doug bought a wonderful book called Herbal Healing and it goes in depth about supplements and tinctures. Rose Mountain Herbs also carries great info. Once I have this flu tincture done I'm going to make one for a general immune system booster and one for calming/sleep. RMH carries herbal blends already made for many conditions. You can make teas or tincture them.

DanLeaAnn said...

Hi JoAnn, I'm a bit late in reading your posts, I always enjoy them ! I need to get back to making those tinctures :-) - I ordered all that elderberry syrup, went a little nuts with the looming pandemic - glad we haven't had to use them - I need to get off my rear and mail you some neat stuff I've found - toothbrush rugs, too much fun and you can make rugs fast ! and the extra glycerine I have.... off to bed ! - Lea Ann

DanLeaAnn said...

Hi JoAnn, love reading your posts, am just getting to them though...I went nuts and bought enough elderberry syrup for all seven of us...I need to get off my rear and mail you some neat stuff I've found - toothbrush rugs, fast and fun ! and the extra glycerine I to bed ! Lea Ann