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This post is all about how to use a tincture
Are you new to the natural medicine game or haven’t ventured into how to use a tincture yet? Have you heard of herbal tinctures? Maybe you have even tried one or two but don’t know how they work or how to properly take them? If you answered yes to any of the above, then this is the post for you! A tincture is a liquid supplement that can be used for a wide variety of health needs. So, what exactly is an herbal tincture? How does it work? Enter the guide on how to use a tincture!
In this guide, you’ll find everything you need to know to get started with how to use a tincture, including:
- What a tincture is and why it’s important
- The different types of tinctures and how they work
- Tips, tools, and best practices to succeed with using tinctures
Read on so you can also use herbal tinctures to naturally ease many symptoms and supplement your body with vitamins and minerals.
How To Use A Tincture
What is a tincture?
A Tincture is a liquid extract that is made from a large number of herbs (one or many) steeped in alcohol or glycerin for 4-6 weeks. During this time, it is left in a cool, dark space. After the mixture has sat, the herbs are then strained, and you are left with a liquid tincture! You take a tincture by mouth with a dropper from a glass jar.
Why is knowing how to properly use a tincture important?
For best absorption
There are many ways you can take an herbal tincture. Some have better absorption by the body than others!
For safe dosing of all ages
While you don’t need a prescription for herbal tinctures, it is important to note that you should treat it like prescription medicine. Don’t overdo it or take more than the recommended dosing. While herbs have been used for centuries to help with all kinds of ailments, some have contraindications (that’s fancy for ‘use with caution for certain conditions’).
Types of tinctures
There are two main ways of making a tincture. There needs to be a way to extract the medicinal properties of an herb to the liquid so that it is an effective remedy.
Alcohol tinctures are exactly what they sound like. The medicinal properties of an herb is extracted by adding alcohol as it sits for several weeks. This is the most effective method of extracting herbs. But don’t worry, you won’t be getting buzzed off of an alcohol tincture if you are taking the recommended dosing. Most herbalists will say that they are safe for pregnant or breastfeeding women (certain herbs are not so research that) but, as always, consult your medical professional prior to taking any medication (herbal or pharmaceutics). I will warn you; most alcohol tinctures do taste pretty terrible! So, stay tuned for the best ways to take them if taste is an issue for you.
Glycerin tinctures extract medicinal properties of an herb with food grade vegetable glycerin. Glycerin is not as effective as alcohol (some herbs, not all!) at extracting all the goods from herbs but that has been easily fixed by increased dosing (more drops are needed). If you have a zero-alcohol policy for your diet or other reasons why you shouldn’t be consuming even a small amount of alcohol, then the glycerin tincture is an excellent option for you. I find that the taste is great, and my kids are more likely to take them!
How to use a tincture Successfully
Ok so the best way to take a tincture is putting the drops directly in your mouth and preferably under your tongue. It’s best if you do so on an empty stomach. I find that in the morning after I wake up is a great time to take any of my tinctures. If you are placing the drops under your tongue, count to 30 or 60 and then swallow. This method is for maximum absorption of the tincture by your body.
Another method on how to use a tincture is by placing the drops in a liquid of your choice. This can be your morning coffee, tea, juice, or even water. I’ve known some people who like to put their tinctures together (if taking multiple) in a shot glass and downing it that way followed by water or juice. This is especially helpful if you are taking alcohol tinctures that taste bad.
Buy from a reputable brand that uses organic ingredients when possible. Not all tinctures are equal. Make sure the brand you buy from chooses farms that have healthy soil, don’t use harmful pesticides/insecticides/fungicides, and are sustainable. An excellent example of a brand like this (earthley.com/ref/AshleyHemphill/” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>and my personal favorite!) is Earthley.
Take a look at this earthley-remedies-to-try-right-now-that-are-natural-and-affordable/” target=”_blank” rel=”noreferrer noopener”>blog post for 10 Earthley Remedies to try right now that are natural and affordable
Do your research. Just like anything else in life, do your own research to see what remedy will best suit you and your family. Everyone reacts to herbs differently. Some work well for others while the same herb can have little effect on another. Talk with your doctor, Naturopath, Functional Medicine Doctor, Nurse Practitioner, herbalist, etc. Research different herbs, their properties, contraindications, uses, and dosing.
Get started with using a tincture today!
Now you know the basics of how to use a tincture! There is a wealth of knowledge out there on the internet on herbs, how to use them, and safety tips. So don’t be afraid to look. We live in a world today that worships “experts” and discourages the average person from learning about a subject for themselves. Be your own expert. I give you permission to learn!
Go explore different brands. But if you want a place to start, check out my favorite natural brand, Earthley. They check all the boxes I listed above. Read this blog post all about my top 10 favorite products they carry, including several herbal tinctures.
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