Extractions Lab: Our Projects
There are several ways to extract medicines from plants (Tobias calls the beneficial extractions phytomedicinals) that have been used for thousands of years. Concoctions, decoctions, herbal teas, percolation, soxhlet extracts, macerations, sonification, and other methods have been used as the essential go-to for treating illnesses and maladies of all kinds. Historically, one of the most common ways to create a tincture has been to combine medicinal herbs in containers, shaking them by hand daily over the course of several weeks to extract their useful and varied constituents. Today, we do not always have the benefit of time. One of Tobias's common methods of extraction is using a soxhlet device which reduces extraction times that would normally take weeks down to a day or two (video below).
Click here to book a session for an analysis of customized herbal extractions that can benefit you.
This video shows an extraction of Scutellaria baicalensis using the soxhlet method in Tobias's extraction lab. The beautiful golden red color of the phytomedicines are visible within the soxhlet extraction device as high-quality consumable ethanol alcohol condenses at the top of the device (wrapped area) due to continuous cooling. The condensed (and potent) ethanol (near 100% at this point) drips slowly into the natural plant material, drawing the beneficial phytochemicals into the flask below with each cycle. As the alcohol is condensing, it is always pure rather than circulating already-extracted chemicals. We know all the plant material has been extracted when this no longer has any color.
When we borrow the antibiotic compounds from plants, we do better to borrow them all - not just the single solitary most powerful among them. We lose the synergy when we take out the solitary compound. But most important, we facilitate the enemy, the germ, in its ability to outwit the monochemical medicine.
The polychemical synergistic mix, concentrating the powers already evolved in medicinal plants, may be our best hope for confronting drug-resistant bacteria.
All medicines are not made equally. When you purchase a tincture, medicinal ointment, or other plant-based medicine they can be mixed, diluted, and cut down with any number of constituents which affect their working ability. Unfortunately in many cases, parts of the plant (leaves, for example) are used when the real potency is in the roots. Other times, the stem and roots are used when the potency is in the leaves. It is also common to purchase a product on "the market" that seems to be the right one, when in fact there are much better varieties; for example, white willow is commonly and historically used for pain, fevers, and inflammation, yet there exists a much better potency in red willow bark. When you are sick or in pain, there is no time for mistakes. In Tobias's lab, purity and potency are the top priorities. Tobias sources the "rough" products meticulously, ensuring their safe origin and purity before extracting anything.
When you use an extraction from Tobias, you know exactly what you are getting.
Consultation with Tobias is required to purchase natural products, tinctures, and supplements. Book a consultation with Tobias today by phone, video, or in person to determine what will best suit your personal needs.
Tobias compounds all formulas in accordance with the Canadian Natural and Non-prescription Health Products Directorate (NNHPD). Products may be provided to individuals who have an in-person practitioner-patient relationship with Tobias.
These jars are examples of tinctures made by the traditional method of maceration: soaking, shaking, and waiting for several weeks before the beneficial phytomedicines are fully extracted into the liquid. This can be a preferred method, especially in cases where the active desirable chemicals in an herb is heat sensitive.