A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE TO HERBAL DECOCTIONS
Decoctions are made by simmering roots, barks, seeds and dried berries to extract a powerful concentration of medicinal plant constituents. They tend to have a stronger and more potent flavor than infusions.
*Many herbs can be used for either an infusion or decoction, depending on how strong you like your brew. Play around & discover what works best for you! See my comprehensive guide to herbal infusions here
*It’s always best to check with your doctor if you’re on medications prior to taking or combing herbs. If you’re curious about what herbs are right for you or would like support with a recent diagnosis - reach out for a 1-1 session for individualized recommendations.
::: Add 2-6 tbsp (depending on how potent you like your brew) of roots, bark or berries to 32 oz of cold water to a saucepan.
::: Heat the water until it begins bubbling and then reduce for a low simmer for 20-45 mins
::: Remove from the heat & allow to cool.
::: Strain the liquid into a 32 oz quart mason jar & enjoy!
::: Keep the strained herbs and re-use them 10-15x, repeating this process until they lose potency.
*Decoctions stay fresh for up to 1 week in the fridge - some a bit longer.
Other uses for decoctions:
Use your decoctions for herbal baths
Use the strained herbs to make a medicinal poultice for topical applications
Freeze the liquid in ice cube trays or popsicle molds for a cool herbal summer treat
Use your decoction to make an herbal syrup
An adaptogenic herb with anti-inflammatory, anticancer and antioxidant properties.
Benefits: This powerful immune tonic restores immune function, supports heart health, improves sexual health, and helps to heal adrenal fatigue.
A powerful immune system ally that helps to build white blood cells
An adaptogenic herb with anti-inflammatory properties.
Benefits: Increases resistance to stress, reduces blood sugar levels, reduces cortisol, improves thyroid function, boosts testosterone/fertility in men and reduces depression.
A mighty herbal ally for stress support, travel & major life transitions
A gentle nervine herb with phytoestrogenic properties.
Benefits: Used to normalize the feminine system. Helpful for menopausal symptoms, menstrual cramps, and increasing estrogen.
A effective herb for balancing menstrual irregularities and sluggish labor
A nourishing root with diuretic and anti-inflammatory properties.
Benefits: Used to cleanse the skin and blood, eliminate accumulated toxins via the kidneys, and to improve liver function. For women, it can help clear skin disorders and alleviate both premenstrual and menopausal symptoms, through gentle detoxification. Burdock root is rich in inulin, which is a soluble fiber that supports the growth of healthy microflora.
A powerful ally for skin conditions & liver support
A healing bark with antibacterial, antimicrobial, and anti-inflammatory properties
Benefits: Soothes stomach troubles, reduces flatulence and stimulates appetite, and regulates blood sugar. Note that Ceylon cinnamon is the best non-toxic form.
A supportive ally for those with blood sugar issues & diabetes
A healing bark with antispasmodic, sedative, relaxant and astringent properties.
Benefits: Relieves menstrual cramps, helps heal gynecological disorders, and works as a muscle relaxant.
A helpful herb for soothing menstrual cramps & discomfort
A nutrient-rich root with anti-inflammatory, diuretic, and detoxification properties.
Benefits: Used to cleanse the liver, clear constipation, balance hormones, and enhance digestion. Dandelion root is rich in inulin, which is a soluble fiber that supports the growth of healthy microflora.
A potent herbal ally for clearing constipation
An immunity herb with anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial properties.
Benefits: This is a great all around immunity herb because it targets bacterial, viral, and fungal infections. Echinacea stimulates white blood cells and supports the lymphatic system.
A helpful herbal ally for boosting immunity
Properties: Berries- Antiviral, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory
Flowers- Antiviral, nervine relaxant, diuretic, antioxidant
Benefits: Powerful immune system booster, rich in antioxidants and flavonoids, helpful for cold/flu, allergy relief, and bladder infections.
An incredibly effective immune system ally
A nutritive root with antibacterial, antifungal, and anti-inflammatory properties.
Benefits: Used to help prevent/reduce motion sickness & morning sickness and soothe nausea. Ginger’s warming properties improve digestive fire, expel gas, and break fevers. Its anti-inflammatory actions help to reduce pain and increase immunity.
A potent herb for digestive support & healing inflammation
A nutritive berry with high antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and immune boosting properties.
Benefits: Regulates blood pressure, supports digestive health, reduces anxiety & depression and supports heart health.
A wonderful herbal ally for healing the heart
A hypnotic herb with anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties.
Benefits: Soothes stress and nervous tension, supports deep sleep, relieves pain, and lifts libido.
A potent ally for calming the nervous system and awakening libido
A root with antiviral, anti-inflammatory, and immune-boosting properties.
Benefits: Helpful for healing heartburn, clearing ulcers, soothing the esophagus, relieving constipation, and repairing the stomach lining. It also regulates cortisol, regulates blood sugar and helps to ease cravings. *Be careful if you have blood pressure concerns.
An effective herb for healing reflux & related conditions
A nutrient-rich root with demulcent, diuretic, and expectorant properties.
Benefits: Used for dry coughs, healing wounds, urinary tract infections, soothing sore throats, healing acid reflux/heartburn, calming digestive inflammation, and healing mouth ulcers.
A soothing herb for the respiratory tract
An herb with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties.
Benefits: Supports liver health, clears excess estrogen, and reduces the effects of aging on the body by promoting healthy skin. Milk thistle is a powerful detoxifier that acts specifically on cleansing and healing the liver.
A potent herbal ally for restoring the liver
Orange peel is high in vitamins A and C, and acts as an anti-inflammatory to increase blood circulation. Orange peel also helps with lung health by acting as a natural antihistamine and expelling congestion from the lungs.
An effective herb for supporting the respiratory tract and enhancing metabolism
A nutritive fruit of the rose plant with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Benefits: Rose is high in vitamin C and minerals, with a potent dose of vitamin A known for healing and promoting skin health. Rosehips also act as an anti-inflammatory, fantastic for boosting immunity and supporting cellular strength. Add to your infusion for a tangy, citrusy flavor.
An effective herb for healing systemic and chronic inflammation
A nutrient-rich fruit with powerful anti-inflammatory properties.
This herb is a great herb for anyone who is experiencing mild depression as well as adrenal fatigue/burnout. Along with helping to uplift the mood and balance the adrenals, it can also help with: balancing blood sugar, clearing lung infections, regulating blood pressure, boosting libido, and protecting the liver from everyday stressors.
A potent ally for full body regeneration
*In Chinese medicine, Schisandra is used to restore vitality by consuming the plant for 100 days straight. This helps to cleanse the blood, restore kidney energy, and heal the skin from the inside out. Schisandra is also incredibly effective for restoring adrenal health.
A nutritive root with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Benefits: Reduces inflammation, joint and muscle pain, aids in digestion & detoxification, and improves skin health.
An effective herb for whole body healing & inflammation reduction
An adaptogenic mushroom with anti-cancer, antioxidant, and immune-boosting properties.
Benefits: One of the highest scoring ORAC foods (Oxygen Radical Absorbent Capacity) which are known for their ability to fight free radicals. Chaga boosts the immune system by stimulating the production of immune cells and supports the adrenals & nervous system.
A potent ally for immune system regeneration
An adaptogenic mushroom with antioxidant, anti-cancer, and hepatoprotective properties.
Benefits: Increases energy & libido, optimizes cholesterol levels, improves endurance and can assist with increasing oxygen in the blood, which also provides more energy and helps with ATP synthesis (energy-production).
An effective ally for replenishing vitality
An adaptogenic mushroom with anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, antitumor, antiviral, and immune-boosting properties.
Benefits: Helps to prevent immune system disorders, has beneficial effects on the liver (helping both to regenerate and protect it) and reduces fatty deposits on the liver. Reishi is helpful for relaxation, anxiety relief, and sleep support.
A potent herb for soothing nervous tension & increasing immunity