Where do you source your tinctures?
Glam Gardener NYC tinctures are made with wild-harvested regional medicinal plants sourced in pristine forests across New York, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania. All of these areas are free from pesticide spraying. Although wild-harvested plants can't be certified USDA organic since they are not grown on a farm, we like to call wild plants "better than organic," because they often surpass the standards of organically grown plants.
What are your tinctures made from?
Glam Gardener NYC tinctures are made at a 1:5 ratio, meaning that they contain 1 part plants and 5 parts menstruum. The menstruum that we use is organic alcohol. Other menstruums include apple cider vinegar or vegetable glycerin. We use alcohol for the highest extraction rate for the most potent result.
We use an 80-proof vodka—instead of an astronomically high proof—to ensure ease when taking the tincture. Who wants to taste 150-proof vodka? Not us!
We patiently wait for my tinctures to cold cure for 6-8 weeks. Then, we use a double extraction method to ensure a full spectrum of the plant’s properties.
Some of our tinctures include an organic, sustainable-certified vegetable glycerin to make them more palatable when taking.
How do I use tinctures?
Typically, tinctures are used as a supplement. They are not to be taken daily for an extended period of time. Rather, they are to be taken with a goal in mind. For example, for 2-3 weeks as a regimen to help clear the lungs.
Shake well before using. Ingest one full squeeze of the dropper by mouth. This is called a 'dropperful.' Apply under your tongue and let it sit in your mouth for 30-90 seconds before swallowing, or add to water or juice.Take 2-5 times per day.
Each bottle is 1 ounce (28 grams) and each dropperful is 1 milliliter. There are roughly 30 dropperfuls per bottle.
Please keep in mind that there are many variations to tincture-taking methods. Do some research into this variety and adjust to your body’s needs.
How long do tinctures last and how should they be stored?
The industry standard expiration date for alcohol-based tinctures is 5 years! Yes, 5 years. Keep them in a dry, cool, and dark place to ensure they last. They do not need to be refrigerated, but there is no harm from storing them in your fridge!
However, for tinctures that contain alcohol & vegetable glycerin, the shelf life is cut to 1 year. That's the price for a tasty tincture!
Is there research to support these claims?
Yes! I’m going to link a scientific paper published in Science Direct about mullein.ScienceDirect is a leading source for scientific, technical, and medical research. Click here to read about the many discovered benefits of mullein leaf, flower, and root.
This is just one example of a paper that explores mullein's benefits and the different methods used to ingest it. Iencourage you to do your own research as well.
Are tinctures a medicine or a supplement and what’s the difference?
Tinctures are considered dietary supplements. Here's a little history as to why tinctures cannot be labeled as 'medicine.'
All prescription and non-prescription drugs are regulated in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). But in 1994, the Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) defined dietary supplements as a category of food, which put them under more lenient regulations than drugs.
Because supplements aren’t considered drugs (or medicine), the FDA does not mandate that tinctures or other supplements go through the strict trials and requirements that drugs do. Thus, there is usually less clinical research on the effectiveness of herbal supplements compared to prescription drugs. This doesn't mean that herbal supplements are not effective. It means that the FDA does not require sellers to prove the effectiveness of supplements.
So how do we know that plants are effective as supplements?
Great question. There is widespread global interest in using supplements. Thus, there are many naturopathic and herbal institutions that publish research that proves the effectiveness of plants as supplements. In addition to clinical research, there’s plenty of traditional knowledge and anecdotal research on healing plants. Think about it... plants have been used as supplements by humans (literally) since humans were humans.
Glam Gardener NYC tip: For anyone interested in starting their learning journey into healing plants, two well-known bodies of indigenous knowledge are called Traditional Chinese Medicine and Ayurveda.
But what about flat-tummy teas and other herbal scams?
AMAZING QUESTION! The laws mentioned above are one of the reasons why we see confusing marketing around supplements and herbal products. Because supplements do not have to pass the same stringent requirements as drugs, exaggerated claims are often made by crappy companies. Sorry, not sorry!
Let's use flat-tummy tea as an example. While there are plants that totally assist with speeding metabolism, detoxification, and bloat reduction, one's lifestyle also needs to complement these processes! We cannot eat junk food, fail to exercise, and drink sugary drinks, expecting a nightly cup of flat-tummy tea to take inches off of the waist.
On top of this, flat-tummy teas specifically tend to capitalize on widespread body dysmorphia and poor body image to sell products. Often, flat-tummy teas are promoted by celebrity brand ambassadors that have 'flat tummies' from plastic surgery. This is a sad practice that perpetuates poor body image and creates confusion around supplements, thus causing some to not believe in plants' healing benefits.
Here's the lesson. No one should expect a plant to be a one-stop-shop for healing. Many of us who work with plants call them 'allies' as they are amazing natural options that work with us, not for us.
To learn more about the FDA and how it regulates supplements, click here. These laws are the reason why the following disclaimer is required on supplements.
Glam Gardener NYC Disclaimer: All of the plants that I work with have health benefits that are well documented in many herbal books, both old and new, and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Furthermore, these statements have not been evaluated by the FDA.
We are not qualified to treat any ailments. Thus, when in doubt consult your healthcare provider or a clinically trained herbalist.