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Ever heard of liquid herbal extracts? If you haven’t already, chances are you’re about to. They’ve got the wellness industry abuzz by harnessing nature’s wisdom and delivering rapid absorption. We’re calling it now: They’re about to be huge.
So what exactly are liquid herbal extracts? And, why would you want to consider trying them? Well, today, we’re taking a deep dive into all this and more. So, read on to explore your expert guide to liquid herbal extracts.
As you might guess from the name, liquid herbal extracts are essentially a fluid containing the complex and varied components of the herb. If you’re familiar with tinctures and you’re thinking they sound similar, they are. But there’s one major key difference: The potency of a herbal liquid.
“Most liquid herbal preparations are described in terms of their herb:menstruum ratio, with menstruum being the solvent or put more simply, the liquid used for extraction. Unlike tinctures, liquid herbal extracts have a herb:menstruum ratio equal or larger than 1:1,” explains Wanderlust’s naturopath, Deanna Mascioli.
If your head starts spinning with the science chat, we’ve got you. What this all means in a nutshell, is that liquid herbal extracts are more concentrated than tinctures.
Now, for the fun part! Like tinctures, liquid herbal extracts are made through a method of extraction using water and alcohol.
“Herbalists have used alcohol as a solvent to produce herbal extracts for many years, and it remains a popular solvent for extraction today. The extraction involves minimal processing, allowing the herbal taste and aroma to come through. Often, liquid herbal extracts are complemented by natural oils to improve the taste,” says Deanna.
The ratio of herbs to alcohol used is dependent on what concentration is desired. “At Wanderlust, most of our liquid herbal extracts are a 1:1 concentration. This means that 1kg of dried herbal material is used to produce 1 litre of herbal extract liquid or 1 g of herbal material per 1 mL of herbal extract liquid,” explains Deanna.
One of the biggest drawcards of liquid herbal extracts is “they are rapidly absorbed,” shares Deanna.
With rapid absorption in mind, you can see why liquid herbal extracts come in a huge variety of formulas that can be taken orally to support a range of health benefits. A few popular liquid herbal extract formulas worth mentioning are ashwagandha for stress support, valerian to improve sleep quality and milk thistle to support detoxification.
Liquid herbal extracts can be taken in a variety of ways. It all comes down to individual preference and convenience. If you’re new to liquid herbal extracts, Deanna suggests diluting them in juice or herbal tea. They can taste a little bitter at first while your taste buds adapt, so watering liquid herbal extracts down with something else can make them more palatable.
If you’re a seasoned liquid herbal extract user, you can take it directly under the tongue. Or, try Deanna’s favourite method and “dilute the directed dose in 30mL of still or sparkling water before consuming immediately.”
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