Medicinal Mushroom Tincture: Buy Online or Make Your Own
How to Make Your Own Medicinal Mushroom Tincture
The properties of mushrooms are traditionally accessed one of three ways: cooking and eating the fruiting body of the mushroom; making a strong mushroom tea, or decoction; or via an alcohol extraction. The method of extraction that will be right for you will depend on which mushroom suits your own health goals.* That being said, almost all mushrooms can be made into an alcohol extract, or tincture, which has the added benefit of increasing the shelf life of your mushrooms so they are available when you need them most. Below we will walk you through the step by step of how to make your own medicinal mushroom tincture, and some best practices to keep in mind while selecting your materials.
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Why Make a Medicinal Mushroom Tincture, and How Do You Use It?
Medicinal tinctures have been used since the times of ancient Egypt as a way to preserve and ingest medicinal herbs and mushrooms. As you can imagine, for this preparation method to withstand the test of time, it must be easy to make, and the means of preparation must be accessible to a broad audience. These simple and effective preparations double as a preservation method, extending the life of seasonal fresh herbs and berries without fear of spoilage.
As well as offering a shelf-stable formula, tinctures also concentrate higher levels of both polysaccharides and triterpenes in both plants and mushrooms, giving the extract more potency than any other method of ingestion (1). For instance, some active components in woody, or otherwise indigestible mushrooms, such as the triterpenoids and phenolic components from Reishi, Chaga, and Red Banded Polypore, will usually require an alcohol extraction, in addition to a water decoction or tea extraction (1).
Regardless of what you are desiring to tincture, all extracts share similar attributes. Namely, all tinctures:
- Will have alcohol as the main solvent with varying amounts of water.
- Can be made using either fresh or dry ingredients (but in the case of mushrooms, dried is preferable); which you choose will affect the amount of water needed to add to the preparation.
- Will be shelf-stable for years to come, provided they are stored in an air-tight container in a cool, low-light, and dry space.
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Mushrooms are best extracted using a “double-extraction” technique. This is a common method used for mushrooms and herbs that hold a variety of constituents that are both water-soluble (polysaccharides) and alcohol soluble (the terpenoids and phenolics mentioned earlier). In order to attain a medicinal mushroom tincture that is full-spectrum, double-extraction is necessary. Below we’ll walk you through what that process looks like.