What is a Tincture?
A tincture is a concentrated dose of a medicinal botanical dissolved in alcohol, glycerin, MCT oil, or water. Infused tinctures of hemp can be called golden or green dragon tinctures.
Tinctures can be consumed orally (by swallowing), sublingually (a few drops placed under the tongue), or in food or beverages. They are often stored in a small screw-topped bottle with an eyedropper in it.
Tinctures of your favorite can be quite strong, medicinally, and the eyedropper allows for more precise and repeatable dosing.
Benefits of Botanical Tinctures
A tincture can be of medicinal use for a variety of conditions:
- Relieve pain
- Reduce nausea, especially nausea associated with chemotherapy
- Reduce muscle spasms in paraplegics or people with multiple sclerosis
- Improve sleep
Tinctures are becoming more popular, especially in states that have made recreational use legal. There are myriad reasons for this, including the desire of some folks to not smoke because it hurts their lungs, or they prefer not to have a strong smell of smoked flower on their clothes in a public place or in their living space.
Other reasons can include having young children around that the smokers do not want to expose to the smoke or have the children see the partying going on. Tinctures are socially discrete but offer few compromises in terms of dosing; they work quickly and thoroughly.
How Do You Consume a Tincture Sublingually?
The common way to consume a flower tincture is to place a few drops under the tongue, move it around with your tongue or finger, and then swallow it. This method optimizes both the relief and the speed with which it affects you.
There are many blood vessels under the tongue, so you are putting the tincture in the best place to get into your bloodstream rapidly with little waste.
When you consume the tincture in food or drink, much of the effects are digested in the stomach, making for a slower-working and diluted dose.
How Do You Make a Tincture?
It is vitally important to ‘activate’ your flower if you wish to consume it in an edible or tincture.
If you eat raw flower that has not been decarboxylated, you will not feel the chemicals it contains to get the full effects. However, gently heating the flower removes a carboxyl group from the plant, which allows interaction with receptor sites in the body.
The process is called decarboxylation (decarb for short). When you smoke or vape, the heat you expose the flower to activates the chemicals in them. For oral consumption, you must decarb the flower before you will feel the effects of the chemical in your favorite plant.
Manual Decarbing and Infusing
Of course, the LĒVO makes all of the steps you need to do so much easier and more efficient. All three LĒVO machine models have both decarboxylation and infusion cycles. You can learn more about all 3 machines and find the one that is right for you here.
However, if you don’t have a LĒVO yet (and why not?) but still would like to try and make your own tincture, you can find those manual oven and stovetop instructions here.
Note: For the most part LĒVO contains the smell associated with decarbing. Just so you know, using an oven will produce a very strong, lingering odor. If that’s going to be a problem, we suggest opening a window and using a fan to pull the smell out- along with your oven’s vent hood.
The worlds first patented oil infuser that lightly dries herbs fresh from your garden, activates their maximum potency, and infuses them into just about anything. Great for daily, small batch, artisanal infusions.
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