Questions regarding the use of herbs:
Q: I am interested in herbs. How should I start?
A: Herbal Extracts Plus offers a comprehensive guide to herbs, herbal use, alternative medicine and general health issues in our Herbal Learning Center, which will provide you with all the information you need. We also provide links to other informative sites that will help you in your research.
Q: Are there side effects I should be concerned about when taking herbs?
A: Herbs are a natural source of food and work in harmony with your body when taken properly. There are some side effects associated with certain herbs and, therefore, it is important to practice moderation and follow dosage instructions, and read any warning or contraindications associated with herbal remedies. When taken properly, herbs are a very safe complement and/or alternative to synthetic medicines.
Q: How many times a day can I take herbs?
A: Unless otherwise directed, you can usually start with one capsule twice a day for most commercially available herbs. Then, as you start to see and feel the results, you may increase slightly or decrease slightly depending on the desired results. When using herbs as a tea, one or two cups a day is usually sufficient.
Q: Can I take more than one herb, or blend of herbs, at the same time? Similarly, can I treat more than one condition at the same time by doing this?
A: Yes, most herbs and herbal formulas can be taken together. Just be sure to read the dosage instructions and any warnings associated with the herbal products. Remember to use moderation. If you start taking multiple herbs at the same time, you may notice the desired results, but will not know if only one of those herbs is responsible. It's best to start gradually. Herbal Extracts Plus suggests that you start with your most serious ailment first; then look to herbs as a food to build the body back to health. It is always advisable to consult a physician before dealing with any serious medical problems or ailments.
Q: When should I expect to see/feel results?
A: Everyone is different and their bodies will react differently because of that. Results depend on many factors, including your current health condition and how often you take the herbs. Many people have seen results within a week, others several weeks. Depending on the severity of the condition you are treating, it may take even longer.
Q: Should I stop taking herbs once I feel better?
A: A good rule is to continue using herbs in moderation. This will help you to continue to feel better and what better way than naturally? Herbs work best when used regularly throughout your life to support your body's overall health every day.
Q: Can herbs be used along with prescription medicines?
A: Herbs and plant extracts can usually be taken along with traditional synthetic medications. It is strongly advised, though, that you seek the advice of a physician who understands the benefits of herbal remedies.
Q: Do I need to change the way I eat while taking herbal supplements?
A: Not necessarily. However, it is always best to avoid alcohol, soft drinks, smoking and secondary smoke. Your diet should include a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables on a regular basis.
Q: Can children take herbs or herbal blends?
A: Yes. Children may take many herbs in teas, capsules and formulas with good results. However, it is imperative that dosage and warnings are followed closely, as not all herbs are suitable for children. Herbal Extracts Plus recommends that it is always wise to consult a physician before embarking on a course of herbal supplements for children.
Q: Is it okay to take my vitamins and herbs at the same time?
A: Yes. Vitamins and herbal supplements usually work well together. You may even find with the right combination that your desired results will come even more quickly.
Q: How do I make herb tea?
A: To make an herb tea, boil one cup of water, add one tsp. of the desired herb, remove from heat, and let it sit for about three to five minutes. Visit our Herbal Preparations webpage for more information about making your own herbal preparations. For specific advice about proper brewing of different teas, check out our Teas page for complete instructions.
Q: Can I continuously use one herb over a long period of time?
A: Unless specifically noted, as some specific herbs have properties that warn against this, yes. However, remember to always use herbs in moderation, and pay attention to how your body is feeling.
Q: What is the best way to store herbs?
A: Herbs should be stored in closed containers away from direct sunlight, and in a cool, dry area. Avoid exposure to extreme heat and humidity, or extremely cold temperatures.
Q: I have noticed that sometimes the color, smell, and even taste of the same kind of herb or herbal extract will vary when ordered at different times. Why?
A: Herbs can vary in these ways, depending upon weather conditions at the time of growth, the soil in which the herbs are grown, and the time of year at which the herb is harvested, dried, and processed.
Q: What are vegetable cellulose capsules usually made of?
A: Vegetable cellulose capsules, in our previous manufacturing experinence, were made from wood pulp from southern pine trees. We have seen other sources citing that they are also be made from other vegetable and plant fibers, as well as soy. They are completely harmless to your body and are a perfect choice for vegetarians and vegans who do not wish to use gelatin capsules. Many of these types of capsules are also certified Kosher as well. The company who manufacturers your herbal supplement product should be able to tell you the source of the capsules they use and whether they are certified Kosher for those who are interested.
Q: What happens to the capsule shells once they are ingested?
A: Typically after you consume the capsule(s), the shell(s) will dissolve within 20 minutes. Some sources we have found cited 20-30 minutes and some have said 5-10, so contact the manufacturer of the product you are taking for the specifics about the capsules that they are using. Cellulose capsules will not be absorbed into your body and any material that may remain of the capsule shells will pass through your body and be expelled.