Simple ways to incorporate herbs into your life
Water infusions and decoctions of herbs are the simplest ways to extract plants. Teas can be a ritual in your daily routine inviting a moment to pause as they brew. Follow these steps for making an herbal tea infusion. I believe setting an intention for each cup of tea has potential for healing the body, mind and spirit.
Recipe: 3 TBL of herbs to 1 quart of boiling water
Directions for infusions:
1)If your tea blend is mostly leaves and flowers, steep them in boiling
water for 10-15 minutes with a cover. For seeds, roots and bark see #6 below.
2) Add 3 TBL of herbs to your tea pot or glass quart jar.
3) Bring water to a boil in your kettle and pour it over the herbs. Cover and let steep.
4) Strain the herbs out and sip 2-3 cups daily or refrigerate the extra for another day.
5) Teas last 3-4 days in the fridge.
6) Directions for decoctions: If your tea is mostly seeds, roots or bark, then add the herbs to a pot of boiling water. Simmer on low for 20 minutes. Strain and sip. This is called a decoction in herbal medicine because seeds, roots and bark have stronger cell walls and need to be simmered in order to release their medicines. Whereas leaves and flowers only need steeping.
7) If you have a blend of nutritive herbs such as nettles & oats, steep the tea overnight or 6-8 hours for the full benefit of rich minerals.
Dosage: varies depending on the person - generally I recommend 2-3 dropperfuls 3-4 x daily. Read your bottle for exact dosage.
Tinctures are strong medicinal extracts and each dose is similar to a cup of tea. They are small bottles so are convenient to take with you while traveling or going about your day. They can be in alcohol, apple cider vinegar or glycerine which preserve the medicines. Each plant prefers a dierent form of extraction process so work with a trusted herbalist to formulate an appropriate tincture for you.
1) Either take the tincture straight by dropping it on the tongue and swallow (do not drop under the tongue). Or you can add the dosage to 1 oz. of water or tea then swig it back.
2) If the alcohol is too strong for you, then add the tincture dose to a cup of hot tea without a lid and let some of the alcohol evaporate out of the liquid. Then drink the tea.
3) Non-acohol tinctures are also an option, we make three varieties: glycerine, apple cider vinegar or alcohol based. Select which kind works for you at checkout.
I hope this is helpful whether you are a newbie or a long time herbalist. Consistency is key with any lifestyle adjustment. Keep your herbs in a place where you see them often and remember to take them. Even as a long time herbalist, I forget to take my herbs quite often!
Feel free to print this out or refer to this PDF:
DISCLAIMER: If anything dose not feel right then stop taking the herbs and contact your herbalist. This handout is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure diseases.