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MoonDragon's Health & Wellness Therapy
HERBAL INFUSIONS & DECOCTIONS INDEX
Therapeutic Teas


For Informational Use Only
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  • Teas, Infusions, & Decoctions Description
  • Herbal Tea Index




  • herbal infusions, decoctions and therapeutic teas


    TEAS, INFUSIONS & DECOCTIONS

    The two ways to extract medicinal properties from herbs to make teas are infusing and decocting. Which process you will want to try will determined by the part of the plant used to make the tea.

    HOT PREPARATION

    INFUSION: When working with the delicate parts of an herb - the leaves and flowers - you will want to make an infusion. Making an infusion involves pouring hot water over the herbs and then steeping the herbs in the water.

    DECOCTION: If you are using the tough parts of the plant - the roots, bark, twigs, seeds or berries - you will want to make a decoction, simmer the tough parts of the herbs in boiling water. The process can also be used to reduce or boil down herbs to make a stronger preparation. For example, the base of cough syrup. If a remedy combines leaves or flowers with bark or roots, make a mixed decoction/infusion for best results.

    herbal cold macerations


    COLD MACERATION

    Boiling diminishes the active ingredients of some herbs, such as Valerian Root or Dill. It is possible to process delicate herbs without heat by making a cold maceration. This is done by placing 2 teaspoons of a dried herb in a glass dish. Pour 2 cups of cold water over the herbs and let stand overnight. Strain. Add Honey to taste. Drink 3 times daily.

    herbs


    TYPES OF INFUSIONS

    The process to extract the medicinal virtues of an herb need not be complicated. Just make sure you are familiar with the many different preparations.

    POT INFUSION
    For a Pot Infusion, add the herbs to a teapot and pour in boiling water. Cover and let it set for 10 minutes. Strain.

    SOLAR INFUSION
    Try a solar infusion (called "Sun Tea") for very delicate herbs, such as Chamomile, Peppermint, or Spearmint, to keep in the essential oils. Place herbs in a glass container (I use a gallon-sized glass "pickle" jar with a screw lid for large quantities and a 1/2 gallon or quart-sized glass canning jar with the screw on lids for smaller amounts). Add water that is slightly warm to room temperature. Cover and let stand in direct sunlight for several hours (In a south facing window or porch).

    COLD EXTRACT
    Add 2 teaspoons of the herb to 1 cup of cold water. Let the mixture stand for 8 to 12 hours. Strain. Take it as you would an infusion.

    COLD COMPRESS
    Soak a cloth in an infusion or decoction that has been cooled. Wring out the cloth and apply it directly to injuries, swollen joints and inflammations.

    FOMENTATION
    Soak a cloth or towel in an infusion or decoction. Wring it out and apply hot if you need to bring heat to an area.

    herbal brewing


    BREWING TECHNIQUES
    INFUSION

    Herb Leaves & Flowers
    Purified Water

    Warm the pot, then add 1 teaspoon of herbs per cup. Pour boiling water into the pot, cover and let steep for 10 minutes; strain. Sweeten tea with Honey, if desired.
    DECOCTION

    Roots, Bark, Twigs, & Berries
    Cold Purified Water

    Break herb material into small pieces and put 1 teaspoon of herbs per cup into a saucepan. Cover with water and bring to a boil. Simmer gently for about 10 to 20 minutes or until the water is slightly reduced; strain through a sieve.
    MIXED DECOCTION-INFUSION

    Fresh or Dried Herbs
    Cold Purified Water

    Mix the bark, berries or roots in a saucepan and add water. Bring to a boil and gently simmer 10 to 20 minutes. Place the flowers and leaves in a teapot. Strain the hot decoction into the teapot and infuse for 15 minutes. Strain the mixture into a glass container.


    THERAPEUTIC EFFECTS

    Infusions and decoctions allow you to release the healing properties of herbs into water. The value of many medicinal herbs lies chiefly in their volatile oils; in order to keep these valuable oils from being evaporated while brewing, keep the heat low and cover the pot when preparing.

    FOR DOSAGE AND SAFETY

    An average dose is about a teacup full, three times a day of an infusion or decoction. Use smaller doses for children or the elderly. Some herbs, such as Feverfew, are so strong tasting that they are not always suitable for infusions or decoctions. Note: Always verify the safety and check the toxicity warnings of the herbs you are planning to use, or check with an herbalist.

    Extra Tip: When preparing a decoction or infusion from plants from the wild, make sure they are correctly identified. If there is any doubt, do not use the herb. Use only plants away from polluted areas, avoiding harvesting plants along roadsides or drainage ditches containing chemicals, fertilizers, or insecticides. When gathering, do not be greedy and do not over harvest. Leave some plants to grow and reproduce for future use. Always make a donation back to the earth as a "thank you" for the harvest. This may be as simple as giving the remaining plants a drink of water.

    UTENSILS

    You can refrigerate infusions and decoctions for about 48 hours. Always use glass or enamel containers or stainless steel and wooden spoons or steel knives. Sieves should be plastic or nylon. Never use aluminum as this element can be toxic and easily absorbed by the herbs.





    HERBAL TEAS INDEX


    Note: These pages will be added as they are completed.

    Agrimony Tea

    Angelica Tea

    Anise Tea

    Avens Tea

    Bearberry Tea

    Birch-Leaf Tea

    Black Tea

    Blackberry-Leaf Tea

    Black-Elder Tea

    Blackthorn Tea

    Blueberry Tea

    Buckthorn Tea

    Calendula Tea

    Caraway Tea

    Catnip Tea

    Centaury Tea

    Chamomile Tea

    Chicory Tea

    Cinnamon Tea & Other Uses

    Coltsfoot Tea

    Couchgrass Tea

    Cowslip Tea

    Dandelion Tea

    Dead-Nettle Tea

    Echinacea Tea

    Eucalyptus Tea

    Eyebright Tea

    Fennel Tea

    Ginger Tea

    Ginseng Tea

    Goldenrod Tea

    Green Tea

    Hawthorn Tea

    Hops Tea

    Horehound Tea

    Horsetail Tea

    Hyssop Tea & Other Uses

    Iceland-Moss Tea

    Ivy Tea

    Kidney-Vetch Tea

    Knotweed Tea

    Kombucha Tea

    Lady's-Mantle Tea

    Lavender Tea & Other Uses

    Lemon-Balm Tea

    Licorice Tea

    Linden-Flower Tea

    Lovage Tea

    Lungwort Tea

    Malva Tea

    Marsh-Mallow Tea

    Masterwort Tea

    Maté Tea

    Meadowsweet Tea

    Milk-Thistle Tea

    Motherwort Tea

    Mullein Tea

    Nettle Tea

    Pau d'Arco Tea

    Peppermint Tea & Other Uses

    Pine-Needle Tea

    Plantain Tea

    Pumpkin-Seed Tea

    Pussytoes Tea

    Raspberry-Leaf Tea

    Rice Tea

    Rose-Hip Tea

    Rosemary Tea

    Sage Tea

    Savory Tea

    Sea-Holly Tea

    Senna Tea

    Shepherd's-Purse Tea

    Spiny-Restharrow Tea

    St. John's-Wort Tea

    Sweating Tea

    Sweet-Woodruff Tea

    Thyme Tea

    Tormentil Tea

    Valerian Tea

    Veronica Tea

    Vervain Tea

    Watercress Tea

    Wild-Garlic Tea

    Wild-Pansy Tea

    Wild-Thyme Tea

    Yarrow Tea


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    AROMATHERAPY: ESSENTIAL OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES


    Allspice Leaf Oil
    Angelica Oil
    Anise Oil
    Baobab Oil
    Basil Oil
    Bay Laurel Oil
    Bay Oil
    Benzoin Oil
    Bergamot Oil
    Black Pepper Oil
    Chamomile (German) Oil
    Cajuput Oil
    Calamus Oil
    Camphor (White) Oil
    Caraway Oil
    Cardamom Oil
    Carrot Seed Oil
    Catnip Oil
    Cedarwood Oil
    Chamomile Oil
    Cinnamon Oil
    Citronella Oil
    Clary-Sage Oil
    Clove Oil
    Coriander Oil
    Cypress Oil
    Dill Oil
    Eucalyptus Oil
    Fennel Oil
    Fir Needle Oil
    Frankincense Oil
    Geranium Oil
    German Chamomile Oil
    Ginger Oil
    Grapefruit Oil
    Helichrysum Oil
    Hyssop Oil
    Iris-Root Oil
    Jasmine Oil
    Juniper Oil
    Labdanum Oil
    Lavender Oil
    Lemon-Balm Oil
    Lemongrass Oil
    Lemon Oil
    Lime Oil
    Longleaf-Pine Oil
    Mandarin Oil
    Marjoram Oil
    Mimosa Oil
    Myrrh Oil
    Myrtle Oil
    Neroli Oil
    Niaouli Oil
    Nutmeg Oil
    Orange Oil
    Oregano Oil
    Palmarosa Oil
    Patchouli Oil
    Peppermint Oil
    Peru-Balsam Oil
    Petitgrain Oil
    Pine-Long Leaf Oil
    Pine-Needle Oil
    Pine-Swiss Oil
    Rosemary Oil
    Rose Oil
    Rosewood Oil
    Sage Oil
    Sandalwood Oil
    Savory Oil
    Spearmint Oil
    Spikenard Oil
    Swiss-Pine Oil
    Tangerine Oil
    Tea-Tree Oil
    Thyme Oil
    Vanilla Oil
    Verbena Oil
    Vetiver Oil
    Violet Oil
    White-Camphor Oil
    Yarrow Oil
    Ylang-Ylang Oil
    Aromatherapy
    Healing Baths For Colds
    Aromatherapy
    Herbal Cleansers
    Using Essential Oils


    AROMATHERAPY: HERBAL & CARRIER OILS DESCRIPTIONS & USES


    Almond, Sweet Oil
    Apricot Kernel Oil
    Argan Oil
    Arnica Oil
    Avocado Oil
    Baobab Oil
    Black Cumin Oil
    Black Currant Oil
    Black Seed Oil
    Borage Seed Oil
    Calendula Oil
    Camelina Oil
    Castor Oil
    Coconut Oil
    Comfrey Oil
    Evening Primrose Oil
    Flaxseed Oil
    Grapeseed Oil
    Hazelnut Oil
    Hemp Seed Oil
    Jojoba Oil
    Kukui Nut Oil
    Macadamia Nut Oil
    Meadowfoam Seed Oil
    Mullein Oil
    Neem Oil
    Olive Oil
    Palm Oil
    Plantain Oil
    Plum Kernel Oil
    Poke Root Oil
    Pomegranate Seed Oil
    Pumpkin Seed Oil
    Rosehip Seed Oil
    Safflower Oil
    Sea Buckthorn Oil
    Sesame Seed Oil
    Shea Nut Oil
    Soybean Oil
    St. Johns Wort Oil
    Sunflower Oil
    Tamanu Oil
    Vitamin E Oil
    Wheat Germ Oil





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