A COMPREHENSIVE GUIDE TO HERBAL INFUSIONS
All herbs contain an array of healing properties that work synergistically to support the body by bringing it back into balance. Infusions are made up of a variety of herbs steeped for a longer period of time to create nutritive, deeply nourishing, and healing brews. An infusion differs from tea in that you steep it for 4-8 hrs, rather than only 5-20 minutes. Herbal infusions are a potent source of vitamins, minerals, and plant constituents that help to rebuild our cells, while simultaneously boosting immunity and reducing inflammation.
Incorporating a variety of herbs into our daily meals adds a boost of nutrition, while infusions act as a concentrated therapeutic remedy. Make your own herbal infusion by combining any of the following herbs or choosing one herb to work with for about 30 days and observing its effects. Drinking 2-4 cups of these herbs daily will support and nourish your whole body while gently alleviating imbalances and healing common ailments.
Play around with potency, add more of the herbs you feel drawn to, and create a personal blend that you love. Have fun exploring herbal medicine, creating rituals and routines that feel best for you!
*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.
Hot infusions - Hot water draws oils, enzymes, and vitamins from the leaves, flowers and aromatic roots of herbs creating a nutrient-rich, health-enhancing brew. Many herbs have an affinity for hot infusions including: Angelica, calendula, burdock, ginger root, dandelion root or leaves, lemon balm, red raspberry leaf, red clover, holy basil, hawthorn leaves & flowers, linden leaves & flowers, thyme, and nettle (hot or cold).
Infusions tend to stay potent & fresh for 24-48 hrs, some may last longer depending on the mineral content as herbs high in minerals tend to spoil quickly. Once they’ve cooled - store them in the fridge to keep them fresh.
Cold Infusions - Cold water is best for herbs with delicate essential oils, mucilaginous herbs, working with fresh herbs, and when making a sun-tea in the summer months. Some herbs that are best for cold infusions are: Peppermint, spearmint, lemon balm, slippery elm, marshmallow root, rose buds & leaves & stinging nettle.
Wonderful options for sun-tea: Hibiscus, lemon balm, basil, rose hips, cilantro, mint, yarrow, elderflowers, lemon verbena, rosemary.
All herbs can be enjoyed through a hot, cold or sun-tea infusion. Each preparation will offer a slightly different taste and potency. It truly depends on your personal preference. Play around and have fun creating your own special brew!
::: Add 2-4 tbsp (or a few decent pinches) of dried herbs into a 32 oz mason jar.
(You can add more or less of herbs you desire, but it is recommended to use at least 1 oz of herbs per 32 oz of water)
::: Cover completely with boiling (or cold, filtered) water.
::: Cover with a loose lid (unless cold), and let sit for 4 -8 hours for leaves and hardy flowers, or 8 hours for roots and barks.
::: Strain with a mesh strainer & Enjoy!
*Infusions are most potent for 48 hours in the refrigerator and some may last up to 1 wk - those with a higher mineral content tend to stay fresh for just a few days.
A Few Guidelines to Follow:
::: Always buy organic
::: Buy loose-leaf herbs over pre-bagged teas (whenever possible). Sources like Mountain Rose Herbs are fantastic for finding a variety of organic herbs or check out the bulk section of your local co-op!
::: Make your infusions in the evening and then strain it in the morning (OR steep ½ the amount anytime for a quick 20-minute herbal tea). This way it’s easier to add the process to your daily routines.
A nourishing root with 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
This astringent, antiseptic herb has antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties.
Benefits: Internally, it’s effective for enhancing circulation & supporting skin health. Externally, it’s a powerful healer for cuts, scrapes, and burns. Calendula also prevents infection as it has anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.
A healing and soothing herb for various internal & external applications
A gentle nervine herb with antioxidant, anti-inflammatory properties.
Benefits: Can be useful for anxiety, restlessness, trouble sleeping, and stomach pains. Use as a mouth rinse to relieve canker or mouth sores.
A wonderful calming herbal ally, also safe for children
A nutritive herb with antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties
Benefits: helpful for healing external skin conditions, and internally as a remedy for rheumatism.
*After straining, the herbs can be used to make a poultice - a powerful healing remedy for fibrocystic breasts.
A nervine relaxant with antiseptic properties.
Benefits: Helpful for easing anxiety & depression, boosting libido, and strengthening the nervous system.
A potent herbal ally for restoring testosterone & strengthening the male sexual system.
An adaptogen with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Benefits: A helpful remedy for reducing stress and anxiety, lowering blood sugar, and reducing inflammation.
An effective herb for restoring the nervous system & healing adrenal burnout
A nervine with antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties
Benefits: Helps soothe anxiety, depression, calm nerves, and heal insomnia.
A gentle strengthening herb for healing the nervous system & resetting sleep patterns
A lovely nervine herb with anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties.
Benefits: Helps relieves spasms in the digestive tract, lowers blood pressure, calms anxiety & depression, insomnia, and helps relieve indigestion.
A beautiful herb for regulating nervous tension in the mind & body (specifically helpful for soothing the digestive tract).
A nourishing herb with gentle nervine, diuretic, antispasmodic, and sedative properties.
Benefits: Helpful for calming the nervous system, treating colds, lowering inflammation, regulating blood pressure, alleviating headaches (particularly migraines) and muscle spasms.
A gentle nervine for calming the nerves & healing stress-related ailments
A nutritive herb with bioavailable vitamins & minerals + antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and diuretic properties.
Benefits: Rich in minerals and high in iron, nettle is a powerful antidote for anemia. It’s deeply nourishing pre & post cycle, after childbirth, and in the case of a miscarriage. Nettle also supports kidney health, clears urinary tract infections and is incredibly effective at reducing seasonal allergies.
A powerful ally for alleviating allergies, remineralizing the body & helping hair growth
OAT STRAW & MILKY OAT TOPS
A nutritive nervine herb with bioavailable vitamins & minerals + restorative properties.
Benefits: Supports the central nervous system and relieves stress. Oatstraw restores nervous system integrity, emotional flexibility, and sexual flow.
A nourishing herbal ally for restoring the nervous system and healing depression
A potent nervine herb with anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Benefits: Helpful for anxiety, depression, insomnia, and inflammation.
A potent herb for soothing stress & anxiety
An antioxidant-rich herb with anti-inflammatory and antispasmodic properties.
Benefits: Helps to relieve cramping (menstrual & digestive), gas & digestive distress. Also helpful for colic and seasonal allergies. High levels of calcium, B-vitamins, and potassium make peppermint a potent immunity booster.
A helpful herb for digestive dysfunction
A nourishing herb with anti-inflammatory, detoxifying and diuretic properties.
Benefits: Red clover contains resin, a substance helpful to the respiratory system. Often used to treat congestion and coughs due to its antimicrobial properties, as well as to alleviate skin inflammations such as eczema and psoriasis. It is also used to alleviate symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes; for breast pain or tenderness (mastalgia); and for premenstrual syndrome (PMS) due to its phytoestrogen properties.
A supportive ally for restoring & balancing estrogen - a wonderful option during menopause
RED RASPBERRY LEAF
A nourishing herb with anti-inflammatory, antioxidant, and astringent properties.
Benefits: Helps to support and tonify the uterus pre-menstruation - it relieves menstrual cramping and pain, and reduces heavy period flow. Red raspberry is also safe to use in the last stage of pregnancy to prepare the uterus and pelvic muscles for labor and birth (but always consult your doctor or midwife first).
A lovely herb for women through all stages of life
A powerful immune stimulant with antibacterial and antimicrobial properties.
Benefits: Sage is most helpful for sore throats and upper respiratory conditions. It can also be quite effective for dysentery. Sage is also used for reducing overproduction of perspiration and saliva; and for reducing blood sugar levels.
A powerful ally for colds & flu
A nervine hypnotic herb with relaxing, anti-inflammatory, and antispasmodic properties.
Benefits: Helpful for reducing anxiety, insomnia, drug or alcohol withdrawal and reducing inflammation and fevers.
An effective herbal ally for anxiety and sleep support
A powerful immune booster with antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antifungal properties.
Benefits: Supports the immune system, relieves sore throat and bronchitis, and helps soothe stomach aches.
A medicinal herbal ally for boosting the immune system
This gently sedative herb has anti-inflammatory, antibacterial and antiviral properties.
Benefits: Helpful for anxiety, stomach aches, and wound healing. Yarrow is also helpful in cases of amenorrhea as it encourages menstruation. Its astringent properties make it a perfect option for a mouth rinse.
*Strained yarrow herbs can be made into a compress - helpful for healing mastitis + topical wounds
A helpful ally for anxiety and inflammation
Benefits: Used as a fertility aid and helps to stimulate milk production in new moms. It can help to bring back menstruation for women suffering from amenorrhea by increasing progesterone and has also been known to reduce ovarian cysts.
An effective herbal ally for pre/postmenopausal women helping to alleviate associated symptoms