The last few weeks I have been so interested in learning more about herbalism and medicine making from plants! I have always loved nature and love finding new ways to connect with it. It occurred to me that creating an apothecary and working with plants in a ways where I can help heal myself and my loved ones, would be so much fun as well as help me to learn about which herbs I like and which ones I can use for certain ailments. I’ve decided to bring you along on this learning journey, and share what I learn and am doing as I go (let’s do this together)! I think I will be doing a sort of series on some common kinds of plant medicines, and some easy guides that I have learnt for how to make them.
Today I am sooo excited because I will be making my first tincture!! A tincture, if you didn’t know, is basically a medicine made from herbs infusing either alcohol or vinegar for a few weeks, which allows the herbs to bring their nutrients to the substance in a concentrated way. You can take the tincture everyday for as long as you need, and it’s really fun because as you learn more about herbs, you can choose any one or any mixture that you find would help you or your loved one with what you are dealing with.
The last eight months or so, I have been working on healing my Hashimotos autoimmune disease naturally with nutrition, supplements, and lifestyle changes. So I thought for my first tincture, it would be great to use herbs I know help with the thyroid. I’ll probably be using things like thyme, basil, atlantic dulse, lemon balm, and kelp in a mixture for that. But you can use anything for what you need (I reallyy want to make a lavender tincture for anxiety/stress as well). I personally don’t like alcohol, which is traditional for many tinctures, so I am choosing to use apple cider vinegar (raw, from the mother) to put my herbs in.
To make the vinegar tincture, you need:
Dried herbs of your choice
Apple cider vinegar
A mason jar with a sealable lid
Cheesecloth or mesh strainer
Funnel if you would like
And glass dropper bottles to store the tincture in later
It’s really quite easy to make a tincture, which i love.
First you need to fill the mason jar with the dried herbs of your choice.
Pour the apple cider vinegar until the dried herbs are covered.
Seal the lid and store the container in a cool, dark place for two to three weeks.
Make sure to shake it a little everyday.
After the vinegar is done infusing, you can strain it, compost your herbs, and funnel the tincture into dropper bottles! And you’re all done!
I’ve learnt that for alcohol based tinctures, they basically last forever, but for vinegar based ones it usually last up to a year. So make sure you label what herbs you used and when you made it on the jar, and store your tinctures in the fridge so you can keep them longer.
I hope this was informative and helpful, and I will definitely let you know in my next post how the tincture making went!