When it comes to liquid preparations, the first thought often goes to those natural remedies that can also be made at home.
Among these remedies for health, we find decoctions, or liquid compounds that can be obtained after boiling a plant component in water, in such a way as to be able to obtain the active ingredients and their beneficial properties.
When it comes to decoction, it must be emphasized how the less tender parts of the plant are used, namely barks, seeds and roots.
However, in order to make the best possible decoction, it is necessary that the drug has certain dimensions and characteristics.
The method of extracting the active ingredients from the plant drug is called decoction and, in some cases, can be preceded by maceration in cold water, for a minimum period of two hours.
This extraction technique continues with the actual decoction phase, ... continues
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continue ..., that is when you insert the parts of the plant into the cold water and bring the mixture to a boiling temperature, letting it boil for between five and thirty minutes, keeping the flame very low.
It is precisely in this phase that the active ingredients emerge from the herbal drugs and join the water: the next step will be to filter the decoction, in such a way as to remove any unwanted parts.
The decoctions are mainly used in folk medicine, while they do not have a primary role in current phytotherapy, since a too long boiling could lead to the loss of the active ingredients or to a clear modification of their pharmacological activities.
There are different systems to make a good decoction and each of them varies according to the vegetable source and the needs of those who carry out this operation: in any case, there is a particularly interesting preparation method, which is called double decoction, in which it is let the drug boil for a short time, then replace the liquid and perform a second decoction operation.
Quite frequently, the decoction is confused with the infusion: these are two very valid remedies, but which present a substantial difference: in the decoction, in fact, the vegetable component and the water are boiled together, while in the infusion it is necessary to boil the water and then pour it over the vegetable component.
Furthermore, the infusion is often used for all those aromatic herbs and to obtain the water-soluble active ingredients from the most tender parts of the plant.