Finding a natural solution for a healthy heart is easy with this hawthorn tincture recipe.
Many people are searching for natural, healthy alternatives to medications for the heart. One of the best ways to gain tone in the heart muscles is the Hawthorn herb.
Hawthorn (lt. Crataegus orycantholdes) has been shown in studies across the globe as one of the best herbs available for heart health. It has been shown to help equalize blood pressure, lower the pulse rate, and increase strength of the heart's contractions, especially when used for an extended time. Hawthorn can also reduce hardening of the arteries and arrhythmia.
The German governmental agency called Kommission E, which produced guides on the safe manufacture and dosing procedures of herbs as medicines, has shown that it also helps when working in low oxygen conditions and improves physical capacity and capabilities.
An easy way to gain the health benefits that Hawthorn contains is in the creation of tinctures.
Tinctures are created by first placing an herb or mix of herbs into a “solvent,” usually alcohol, vinegar or glycerine. After a period of time, the medicinal properties of the herbs are infused into the solvent, and can then be used.
To make a Hawthorn tincture, one must have a mason, or other jar with a sealing lid. Then, pick fresh or purchase hawthorn. Dried hawthorn herb is available and works well, but hawthorn in powdered form is not quite as potent. The fresher the herb is to begin with, the more potency the tincture will have.
Place the hawthorn into the jar, and then pour alcohol of at least 80 proof over the herb. 100 proof vodka works best, as approximately half of the constituent compounds in the herb will dissolve into alcohol, and the other half into water. Since 100 proof vodka is half water and half alcohol, this solvent will break down the chemical composition of the herb as much as possible.
The alcohol should cover the herb fully, and raise to a level at least two (2) inches above the top of the herb. Push down the plant material with a utensil, making sure that none is exposed to air. All air bubbles trapped under the herb should be released. Then, seal the jar with the lid, and place it into a cool, dry, dark place for a period of at least four (4) weeks.
You should stir the contents of the jar every few days, making sure that there is no plant material exposed to the air to prevent any molding occurring.
After four weeks, the tincure will be ready to use. A longer time period will not be adverse, but bear in mind that the fresher the herb was at the beginning, the longer of a time period will be needed. No more than six weeks, in any case, should be required.
Once sufficient time has passed, strain the contents of the jar out with a cheesecloth. Compost or otherwise dispose of the remaining plant material. You may then store the tincture in the jar itself, or decant into smaller bottles for easier use. The tincture, when made with this method, will be preserved for at least two (2) years when stored properly in a cool, dark place.
If alcohol is unacceptable or otherwise not possible to use as the solvent, apple cider vinegar or glycerine can replace it easily. The time period with these other solutions, however, will be a little longer, and the potency not as strong. Also, if vinegar is used, do not use a jar with a metal lid, as it will quickly destroy the lid, spoiling the entire mix and creating a large mess.
One quarter of a teaspoon daily, mixed in any drink, would be an approximate dose for adults. Use less for children.
Considering the growing concern over good heart health, as well as the rising cost of medications, using this tincture will allow you access to the potent health benefits of Hawthorn, easily and safely, at a low cost.