Extracts & Tinctures: What Are The Differences?

It’s good to know the difference between a tincture and an extract…hopefully the notes below will make that clearer, and more information is available from these sites on ratios and processes.

From Richter’s

A fluid extract (sometimes called liquid extract) is a more concentrated form of herbal medicine than a tincture. A fluid extract is made by combining one part herb with one part fluid, for example, 250 grams of herb to 250 ml. of alcohol.

The ratio of fluid to herb for tinctures varies from 3:1 (i.e. 3 parts fluid to one part herb) to 8:1, depending on the herb.

There is usually sediment in fluid extract bottles. The bottle must be shaken well to combine it with the liquid. The dosage of fluid extracts is much smaller, usually given in drops. The dosage of tinctures is usually given in milliliters. The disadvantage of fluid extracts is that they lose more of the plant’s essential oils, due to the method of preparation.



The Herbarium

…a tincture is the liquid preparation produced by macerating prepared plant material in a mixture of alcohol and water at room temperature over a prescribed period of time, which is then pressed and filtered to yield a fluid into which active constituents of the herb have dissolved.

Fluid extracts are alcoholic extracts with a weight:volume ratio of 1:1. The alcohol content is usually the same as for tinctures…


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