Alcohol Tinctures from http://www.butterflyexpressions.org/Herbal/Tinctures.pdf
Already made tinctures available in the store!!
The liquid medium into which the herb is placed to make a tincture is called the menstrum; the herb is known as the marc. For internal use, the menstrum can be alcohol, apple cider vinegar, or vegetable glycerine. A good rule of thumb for beginners is, “When in doubt, use alcohol.” The medicinal properties of most herbs are pulled out best in an alcohol tincture. If the alcohol content concerns you, place the drops of tincture you need into very hot water to administer them. The heat will dissipate the alcohol entirely. (There is more alcohol in over-the-counter cold medicine, even ones meant for children, than you will typically ingest when taking herbal tinctures.)
One hundred proof Vodka (50% alcohol/50% water) is ideal for herbal tinctures, especially herbals that are the root of the plant. The less expensive eighty proof vodka (40% alcohol/60% water) is acceptable for most herbs. When you need to add water to any tincture, distilled or filtered water is absolutely essential. Vinegar is used, undiluted, in the strength commonly sold.
Measure your herb into a glass jar with a well-fitting lid. Add your menstruum (alcohol or vinegar) so that it covers the herb plus an extra inch, put on the lid and then shake very well. Set in a cool place out of direct sunlight—but not “out of sight, out of mind”. I put mine on my bathroom counter so I can shake it every morning while getting ready for the day. Always check your tincture after 24 hours to make sure all of the herb is still covered with liquid. Any exposed parts will probably mold and ruin the entire batch. You will need to shake this concoction at least once per day for the next 10 to 14 days. Add more liquid at any time if the mixture looks dry or if some of the herb is sticking up out of the liquid. Let the mixture sit for the next six weeks. Mark on your calendar when it is time to strain so you don't forget it (like I do).
Follow the next steps once the six weeks have passed.
An alcohol tincture is taken 12 to 20 drops in a little bit of water. It is usually advisable to take tinctures along with a meal. The nutrients are more likely to be absorbed that way. With something in your stomach, the tincture will be less likely to cause an upset tummy. Depending on the severity of the problem, tinctures should be taken 2 to 5 times a day.
Tinctures are administered in drops, and at least half of those few drops are just water if you used vodka to make the tincture. The alcohol consumed when taking an herbal remedy is negligible. It is far less than that contained in over the counter remedies such as cold and cough remedies, even those for children. In fact, you will be consuming less alcohol taking herbal remedies that you consume when adding vanilla to your favorite frosting recipe.
Alcohol dissipates very rapidly with heat. Since you will be adding the tincture to a couple of tablespoons of water to take it anyway, just make sure the water is very hot when you put the tincture into it. The alcohol will dissipate instantly. You will have completely eliminated the alcohol with this simple step.