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Lemon Balm Tincture

Tackling one of my 13 in 13!

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#1 Andrea

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 10:49 PM

I use lemon balm occasionally to help with heart palpitations I sometimes get with hot flashes and I give it to my daughter when she has rough monthly cycles.  I've found that the easiest way to use lemon balm is in a tincture form.  I've always bought it from the health food store in the past but I have lemon balm growing all over my yard and while I make tea with it during the spring and summer, I seldom bother drying it for winter use.  The tincture usually covers me for the 2 months when my lemon balm isn't producing.  I'm almost out so I went to the local health food store and they've quit selling it.  One of my 13 in 13 tasks was to learn how to make my own tincures.  So today, I went to the store and bought my 100 proof vodka and then went to the South side of the house where my lemon balm generally produces year round.  I found enough young, green leaves to work with and I now have a quart size jar of lemon balm marinating.  I hope it works!  But, I need to wait several weeks to find out.  Some of the resources I used:

 

http://gettingthere....m-tincture.html

http://www.lemonbalm...h.MOtKIy1v.dpbs

http://www.healing-f...-tinctures.html

 

 

I had no idea it was so easy to make!  




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#2 mommato3boys

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Posted 06 January 2013 - 10:56 PM

Let me know how this works. I think I have some vodka, oh wait that is Irish whiskey I have darn. I will have to invest in vodka but still let me know how this works. Lemon balm is one of the herbs I am planting this next year.


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#3 Andrea

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 04:25 PM

I'll let you know if 4 - 6 weeks!  It's turning a lovely light green color, the commercial stuff I buy is usually a seriously unattractive shade of brown LOL




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#4 Jori

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 07:45 PM

You need the vodka to make vanilla extract, too.  Always a good thing to have on had.  Works well with tonic water on the rare occasion. 



#5 mommato3boys

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Posted 07 January 2013 - 10:22 PM

You need the vodka to make vanilla extract, too.  Always a good thing to have on had.  Works well with tonic water on the rare occasion. 

 

Guess I need to invest in vodka. I looked and I do have a little bit of vodka. Probably enough to do one batch.


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#6 Andrea

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 01:32 AM

Sorry, I never got around to updating this thread!  I ended up making three batches of lemon balm tincture (triple distilled), which was far more than I need, LOL.  I'm not fond of the the smell of the 100 proof vodka and my end product turned the same unattractive shade of brown as the commercial product, but the stuff works.  I usually put it in my chamomile tea at night, especially those nights when my mind is racing with a thousand and one things I need to do. The lemon balm actually helps me to relax and focus.  And since lemon balm is a fever reducer, I'll often increase the dose and give it to my daughter mixed with a liberal amount of honey and her favorite lemon tea when she's sick.  

 

A good thing to have on hand.  I really need to get started on making an elderberry tincture next.  I've heard though that the tiny stems are toxic, so I need to research and see if I need to remove all the stems before starting the tincture.  I have several bags of elderberries still in my freezer that I haven't processed yet because of those stupid little stems . . .

 

Any thoughts?


Edited by Andrea, 16 February 2014 - 01:32 AM.



A woman is like a tea bag - you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.
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#7 ArmyOfFive4God

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Posted 16 February 2014 - 04:18 PM

I don't filter my elderberry from herbalcom. Don't know if it has "tiny little stems" but if so, we're all still alive 0_o

 

As for the lemon balm- THANKS!!! for the update. I LOVE lemon balm as a tea. I grow the stuff. LOVE the smell. I didn't even think to make a tincture, though I make all sorts of other tinctures.


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#8 kappydell

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Posted 07 January 2015 - 03:39 AM

im making elderberry schnapps now - right now it is at the tincture stage (soaked ripe elderberries in neutral spirits [could have used vodka, wanted to try everclear]). just strained it today; it is rough, but recipe says to let it sit another 2 months to mellow out a bit. i got a little over 2 qts made and saved the extry for taste testing. recipes next calls for sweetening if needed, but if it mellow enough i'm planning to save some UNsweetened for those who want a tincture rather than schnapps (several diabetics in family). i'm rather afraid though that by the time it 'mellows' enough for use, flu season will be over (rueful laugh). i guess there is always next year....

Edited by kappydell, 07 January 2015 - 03:39 AM.


#9 TheCG

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Posted 08 January 2015 - 09:41 AM

We can't get elderberry at the store right now. They've been sold out for over a month.

We use rum to make vanilla extract.

Vodka (the cheapest we can find) is actually the best thing I have found for removing smells from laundry. I'm guessing it kills the bacteria or something.

...I forgot what I was thinking. 

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#10 Suncat

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Posted 08 January 2015 - 12:08 PM

I don't know if it would work for this but when we made elderberry jam, we'd use a potato ricer to get the pulp from the berries without having to stem/seed them.

 

And I wouldn't worry about if the schnapps is "mellow enough".. for tincture use you can add it to something else.. even just a bit of water to tone it down if you need to, to swallow a dropper full.


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#11 Suncat

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Posted 09 January 2015 - 01:14 PM

Oh and any alcohol over 80proof can be used to make tincture.. vodka is generally used because it's colorless and odorless and mostly tasteless.. but you can get other things... everclear is a high alcohol content one with the same qualities as vodka for doing tincture.. sold at 151 or 190 proof.. but if you like the taste or it's what you can get cheap.. any alcohol will work.. rum or whiskey or whatnot.. just check that it's at least 80 proof (40%).


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#12 ArmyOfFive4God

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Posted 15 January 2015 - 05:45 PM

Just wanted to mention that if you have thyroid issues, do NOT use lemon balm. I found this out after I posted on the subject last year. I was SOOOO bummed. I'm working on my thryoid & adrenals now, so hopefully I can do lemon balm again!


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#13 Suncat

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Posted 15 January 2015 - 05:57 PM

red raspberry leaf is also very good for hormonal issues

 

And magnesium helps with heart beat irregularities


Suncat

 

"Real feminine nature isn't weak or fawning. It isn't about wearing frilly dresses or reading romance novels.

Real femininity is strong, confident, vibrant. But it is strong, confident and vibrant in a uniquely feminine way."

~ Mary Beth Bonacci

 


#14 sassenach

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Posted 15 January 2015 - 10:21 PM

hmm, rasberry leaf extract. can you use dried leaves for an extract or do they have to be fresh? Maybe I will order some rasberry bushes and plant them out around the parking lot edge, lol.... I was thinking of getting some dwarf blue berries, call it lot improvement. Edible in a few years for sure. But the leaves from the rasberry..... hmm. Magnesium, in an extract... it would be pretty good as a supplement. ( I never knew rasberry leaves had magnesium in them! )  Good if I can't get milk or meat. Beans I do not absorb it from well enough even though that is a prep food. Believe me, i ate  a lot of beans already and was deficient despite that. So I am looking for alternatives, and vodka is right around the corner at the package store.

 

Ok, if you make an extract, with vodka, say , how much is appropriate then for a dose? ( so to speak) .

Lemon balm or rasberry extracts as an example. I wouldn't mind either one in my tea or coffee. ( Might do a quart of it with whiskey though for coffee ) . 

 

I may even have some lemon balm seeds, that could also go in the ground. I could always dig some plants up later if it came down to it, to move to a better location for them and me!


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#15 ArmyOfFive4God

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Posted 16 January 2015 - 10:55 AM

I use RRL tea, sass. I also do mag baths (also GREAT for hormonal issues & SOOOOO much else- magnesium is one of my faves with no known contraindictions or side effects, other than topical itching & burning sensation IF you're deficient). Vitex, aka chasteberry, is good for hormones, B12 & there's another.... OH, Evening Primrose Oil is smething you may want to look into. I have a complete regime I do. If you want me to email it to you, pm me your email address. I can fwd it to you sass. I have PTLS,so I've studied the hormonal issues extensively & found what works for me (and others have had success with it as well).


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#16 sassenach

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Posted 16 January 2015 - 12:24 PM

Just looking to minimize supplements, especially if one cannot either afford all of them regularly or supply is cut off due to poor commerce situation, that is why a simple extract if it has magnesium is easier to make for me.... plus many of the buffers and stuff they encapsulate the tablets with is the problem when it comes to absorption issues with supplements! Plus its got more chemicals and I am chem sensitive. Just want purity and in a form like liquid , it will work better.


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#17 Suncat

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Posted 16 January 2015 - 06:20 PM

Well you can make tea with it.  and if you don't like drinking it as tea, I've been known to make a deathly strong tea in a small amount and then let it get lukewarm and gulp it down rather than sip tea.  :happy0203: dark green leafies are on the list as good sources of magnesium so it's not just the red raspberry leaves.. but they do have it.


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"Real feminine nature isn't weak or fawning. It isn't about wearing frilly dresses or reading romance novels.

Real femininity is strong, confident, vibrant. But it is strong, confident and vibrant in a uniquely feminine way."

~ Mary Beth Bonacci

 


#18 Andrea

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Posted 23 January 2015 - 04:30 PM

Raspberry leaves should be dried before using.  If used fresh, it may upset your stomach.  I use a lot of dried raspberry leaves in tea.  I find that it tastes like black tea but without the caffeine.




A woman is like a tea bag - you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.
Eleanor Roosevelt



#19 Mt_Rider

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Posted 23 January 2015 - 09:20 PM

The goats ate all the wild raspberries here....  :rolleyes:

 

MtRider  ...how about gooseberry leaves?  Any use for them?


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#20 Andrea

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Posted 24 January 2015 - 03:46 AM

Goodgrief, MtRider, do you know how many varieties of "gooseberry" exist?  I recommend plants for a future database.  They have 11 different "gooseberries" listed.  I have absolutely no idea which one might be yours!




A woman is like a tea bag - you can't tell how strong she is until you put her in hot water.
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