…with your garden herbsLIZ KOCH – Special to the Sentinel Article Launched: 10/07/2002 3:00:00 AM PDT
Herbalists and farmers traditionally made winter tonics in the fall. The concept of using tonics is as old as herbalism itself, writes local herbalist Jeanine Pollak in her book “Healing Tonics.”
Gathering roots, leaves and berries from mother earth’s abundant healing plants are combined with ripe fruits and brandy to make a delicious brew that strengthens the immune system, stimulates vitality and uplifts the spirit.
Persimmons, oranges and lemons are often mixed with ginger, hawthorne, elder berries and rose hips to make a stimulating tonic that wards off flu and colds.
By offering a powerful source of vitamin C, flavonoids and minerals, the nutritive-rich tonics work slow and steadily to strengthen the constitution and tonify the organs.
Pollak has explored many ways to make tonics, to build blood, tone the digestive tract, balance hormones, strengthen the heart and nourish the nerves. All this is available in a flavorful, colorful liquid that makes the winter a time of renewal.
Liz Koch is the Way of Life health lecture coordinator.