How To Make Your Own Herbal Remedies
Herbs can be made up in a number of different ways. Herbalist can give you tinctures, tablet or capsules or ask you to prepare an infusion or decoction. It is not difficult to make an infusion or decoction, it just take a little time and basic equipment. Generally infusion and decoction are the same, but they use different parts of the plant. Decoction uses the hard part of the plants ie bark and roots while infusion uses the softer parts, such as flowers and leaves. Infusions and decoctions can be used for gargle, mouthwashes, compress or drunk as tea. Once you have decided what method you are going to use, the guide below will help you to make your own.
Decoctions are best used fresh but can be kept in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. They can be diluted with water or sweetened with honey if that makes it easier to drink.
To Prepare Your Decoction:
Cut the recommended weights of the bark, roots or seeds as small as possible. Use a mortar and pestle to further crush seeds or bark. Place into an enamel or pyrex glass bowl. Avoid aluminium as metals may leach.
Cover with recommended amount of distilled fresh water.
Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes to an hour. Ideally the mixture should reduce by one third. When using a gas element, I recommend an infuser to protect the bowl and evenly distribute heat.
Allow to cool and strain. Store in the refrigerator.
Infusion is a tea and is used for dried and fresh leaves or flowers. Infusions should be made fresh each day. To make an infusion:
Place the recommended weights of the leaves or flowers into a warmed china or glass teapot. A coffee plunger is also ideal. Pour boiled water over the herbs and allow it to stand for 5 10 minutes or as specified. Avoid aluminium as metals may leach.
Strain and drink.
You can add ginger, cinnamon or sweeten with honey to aid in the taste.