Do you suffer from Hay Fever? Try this simple DIY tincture to help alleviate symptoms.
Tinctures are a concentrated herbal medicine usually made with dried herbs and an ethanol and water blend. Tinctures can be made very simply, store incredibly well and can be customised easily making them an important part of any herbalists’ apothecary. There are a few different ways to make tinctures, however below I’m going to outline the ‘folk’ method which is by far the simplest as it involves using store bought vodka (approx. 40% ethanol). A more precise method of tincture making requires access to ~100 ethanol which can be tricky for the average person to obtain.
For this Hay Fever tincture recipe, I’ve chosen four herbs to help boost immune response, support the lungs and reduce inflammation.
Astragalus is an immune tonic herb that helps with chronically weak lungs and low energy levels. Nettle is a highly nutritive anti-inflammatory and astringent herb that has a long history of use for allergies. Echinacea helps to boost the immune response, and finally Mullein is an expectorant and demulcent that clears and soothes the lungs.
By Tamara Welsh, Happy Herbalist
To make your tincture combine the herbs in a mortar and pestle, blender or coffee grinder and grind to a course powder.
Place herbs into a sterilised glass jar. The jar should just fit the herbs and vodka. Pour over the vodka ensuring that all the herbs are covered. Lid the jar tightly and give it a good shake. Leave your tincture to macerate for 2-8 weeks shaking the jar daily.
Strain the herbs through a fine mesh sieve or cheesecloth. Decant into an amber bottle and seal. Don’t forget to label your tincture. Store in a cool dark place.
Dosing is very individual so always start small to begin with. An expected adult dose is 5ml (or 1 teaspoon) 3 times daily.
Feel free to create a tincture out of any herbs you like! Just remember to always check cautions and contraindications for any herb you choose.
Happy tincture making!