A Surprising Tonic?
A Surprising Herbal Tonic?
Let’s start with what is a tonic. A simple tonic can be made from one ounce of herbs steeped for several hours in water. Take a quart jar, add one ounce of your desired herb, fill the jar with boiling water, and steep for 10 hours. Strain and keep in the refrigerator for one week.
Many herbalists, myself included, use alcohol such as vodka. Add the herbs to a quart jar, fill with vodka and let sit for several weeks or months. This tonic keeps for far longer if kept in a dark cool place. Up to a year. Taking one or two tablespoons per day will not lead to alcohol problems. But obvious certain medical conditions do not allow for this type of tonic. If that’s you, stick with the first option, also, the rest of this article you may not find as interesting.
Is there a tonic you can buy from the store readily available my argument is yes? Jägermeister. What? Hear me out.
Jägermeister is made of 59 different herbs and spices. It is 35% alcohol by volume. “Jägermeister is a highly refined liquor, it consists mostly of alcohol, water, sugar, and essential oils. Most of the plant material has been removed, leaving only the volatile compounds that add flavor and scent to the alcohol.”
A partial list includes anise, cinnamon bark, cloves, ginger root, coriander, bitter orange skin, red sandalwood, ginseng, saffron, coriander, lavender, rosehip, and juniper berries. It’s important to note that these herbs are present in the alcohol in the form of their oils.
· Anise and Cloves are powerful anti-inflammatories.
· “In moderation, alcohol seems to lower your risk of developing diabetes. It may also help people with diabetes control their blood sugar more effectively. One study showed that drinking up to two alcoholic drinks a day could lower your risk of diabetes by as much as 50%. This effect is stronger with low-sugar drinks, so it’s important to avoid mixing Jägermeister with other sugary liquids to benefit from this effect.”
· Cinnamon Bark is known to reduce spasms as well as reduce gas. Some studies have shown that cinnamon bark may work to help reduce blood sugar levels.
· Ginger root is full of antioxidants that can help your body fight off things like high blood pressure, heart disease, and help to promote healthy aging.
· Coriander is so effective at lowering blood sugar that people taking diabetes medications should avoid consuming it as it can cause a large drop in glucose levels. It is full of antioxidants that destroy free radicals in the body. Several studies on animals have shown that coriander seed extract lowered inflammation and slowed the growth of lung, prostate, breast, and colon cancers.
· Bitter Orange Skins has been used for 20 years to increase weight loss, increase athletic performance, appetite control (weight loss), and improve brain function.
· Red sandalwood is used for digestive issues, coughs, and for blood purification.
· Ginseng is commonly used to reduce inflammation, improve erectile dysfunction. Immunity boost, increases energy levels, lowers blood sugar, increases cognition and memory.
· Saffron can be used to fight depression, reduce menstrual symptoms, reduce appetite aid in weight loss, possibly have cancer-fighting properties.
· Lavender on top of its well-known relaxing properties, has been shown to relax certain muscle groups as well as being antibiotic and antifungal.
· Rose Hips are rich in antioxidants and help protect against heart disease. Can help in weight loss and help fight against type 2 diabetes. It also has pain-relieving properties.
· Juniper Berries are great for digestive issues and bloating as well as is a relaxant and can aid with sleep. Finally, it is also antibacterial.
The list of ingredients is much longer than what we’ve covered but I think this alone makes a good case for Jägermeister being an herbal tonic with health benefits. This is not an encouragement to drink alcohol, especially if you have addictive tendencies or any medical issues where alcohol could endanger your health. And as with all things, should be used in moderation.
Until next time, happy gardening and good health.