Thank you for joining this series on DIY: Make Your Own Herbal Remedies, Elixirs edition. In case you missed the last posts on DIY tinctures, you can view it here. Or on decoctions, you can view it here. Let’s begin!
What is an elixir?
Even though the word elixir has exploded into usage among people making beverages, its definition has yet to be officially defined. The essence of the word still remains; an elixir is a beverage (hot or cold) that is capable of prolonging life, improving health and creating an overall sense of well-being.
The equation for an elixir is: elixir = tea or liquid base + calories (fats, carbs, protein). This combination turns a medicine into food and food into medicine. Elixirs serve as a delivery vehicle for all of the herbs and superfoods that you choose to nourish your body with. Elixirs can be personalized, fine tuned, and intelligently crafted medicinal food.
What we’re doing with elixirs is taking the best that we can find from each herbal tradition and learning to work with them through methods of processing (like decoctions, teas, infusions, etc) and combining them with the best of what the raw and superfood world has to offer.
The goal is to create a daily drink that:
• satisfies a portion of our caloric needs
• helps us fulfill our plans for the day, and
• reach our personal health goals for our individual bodies into an amazing tasting concoction that we enjoy with every sip.
When you fulfill these goals, an elixir can transcend from being a simple beverage and/or meal replacement, and turns into a spiritual experience!
What is the difference between an elixir and a tonic?
Elixirs and tonics are words that are often used interchangeably, but in fact they’re very different. Elixirs are healing remedies; they address situations of imbalance and symptoms of illness. Tonics, on the other hand, promote overall good health and balance; they fortify your system and keep you feeling fit and well. An elixir is used to treat a headache, or cold, or cramps. A tonic, meanwhile, might be used to improve immunity, boost energy, or relieve chronic stress.
Both elixirs and tonics can be decoctions or teas of various herbs, twigs, berries, roots, spices, flowers, fruits, and vegetables. Both are delivered to our bloodstreams in liquid form, making them efficient vehicles for healing and restoration.
You can start out with a tincture you created last week and add a few more ingredients or you can start from scratch using some of these standard ingredients:
- Water- ideally spring water
- Herbs- whole, or powdered of your choice (Use the herbs you get each month inside Rosehive Superfoods Box!)
- Superfoods- most superfoods come in powders. Some superfoods are taken medicinally in small doses (camu camu berry, for example). Others form a large flavor component in elixirs and can often be treated as foods (cacao, maca, lucuma, etc). Mostly we use modern superfood powders like cacao, maca, lucuma, shilajit, and many, many more
- Thickeners- Common ingredients are soaked chia seeds, fats like nuts and seeds made into a milk, frozen berries, coconut and cacao butters and more. Thickeners will also help hold all of your ingredients and powders together to make sure it doesn’t separate
- Ice- when you want to turn your Elixir into a cool beverage or iced drink, having smaller-sized ice cubes on hand is a good idea
- Nut milks and seeds -if you aren’t turning your tea into a nut milk, you can add nut or seed milks into your drink
- Sweeteners- the right sweetener in the right amount can really make or break an elixir. This requires some experimenting: it depends on the type of herb you are using and the temperature of your drink – we like to use raw agave, honey, or maple syrup.
- The secret ingredient- Himalayan sea salt. Adding just a small pinch of Himalayan sea salt to your elixir will bring out and life the sweetness of your elixir and balance the overall flavors
Cold or Hot Elixir Combinations To Try
Green Dream Elixir: Spirulina, cauliflower, cucumber, coconut water, avocado, MCT oil, stevia, collagen peptides
Fat Bomb Coffee Elixir: Cold brew coffee, heavy cream, cacao powder, collagen peptides, cauliflower, avocado, stevia
Keep In Mind
As you can see, consuming herbal elixirs in this way is easy, fun and an absolutely delicious way to take in the amazing properties of tonic herbs and superfoods! Herbal elixirs truly bring your medicine cabinet into your kitchen and make being healthy an art form that is enjoyable and nourishing! Elixir making is a process. Learning herbalism and elixir crafting takes a lifetime to master. Some people have been creating elixirs for over 20 years now, while others have been making them for far less and some of you are just starting thanks to Rosehive Superfoods Box! No matter where you are at in your superfoodie journey, we are so glad you are joining us!
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