When you make a decision to purchase any type of herb product you need to be sure that you get the best quality available on the market. But how do you choose a product that would pass the quality test?
The Quality of the Plant
The first thing you need to know is that the quality of any herb product depends first of all on the strength and freshness of the herbs that went into it. If the herbs are grown organically, the first condition of great quality has been fulfilled. Logically, herbs that are treated with chemicals will absorb them and if you buy them you will be consuming the good, beneficial components together with unwanted toxins (such are pesticides).
The Quality of Processing and Manufacturing
Different herbal products require different types of processing and manufacturing. Whatever product you are buying, whether it is herbal tea, pills, powder or tincture, make sure that the company obtained the GMP certificate. GMP means Good Manufacturing Practices and it’s granted by the UK government agency that carries out thorough inspections to make sure that a product fulfils all the quality requirements.
Do These Quality Checks
If you want to be confident that the products you are buying are of good quality make sure that they can pass these three quality checkpoints:
1) The original plant (which is the material) is of high quality – ideally organically grown
2) The plant was harvested at the right time of the year (where its potency is at the peak)
3) The manufacturing and processing of the plant comply with prescribed quality standards.
7 Types of Herb Products
You can find seven types of herb products on the market: 1) fresh herbs 2) dry herbs 3) herbal teas 4) powder 5) tablets 6) capsules 7) tinctures.
All these different products have advantages and disadvantages which is a topic for another long blog post. However, I will explain the two key terms that are very important to understand when choosing the right herbal product for your needs: herbal extracts and herbal formulations.
While a piece of herbal plant – which is the original material – contains all of the original chemical compounds, herbal extract (also called herbal substance) contains only the desired compounds in a concentrated form. Consequently, if you decide to consume fresh or dried whole herbal plants, you need to take them in bigger quantities to experience the desired effect.
The extraction process is made with help of a solvent – which is a substance capable of dissolving other substances. There are many different solvents available for herbal extraction and each of them is suitable for specific kinds of plants.
Herbal extracts can be used in two forms: liquid and dry. The liquid form is known as a herbal tincture, while the dry form – the powder extract – can be taken in tablets or capsules.
Herbal formulations have been around for centuries. It is a combination of two or more herbal extracts in specified quantities to achieve the desired effect. This is an ancient technique found in traditional herbal medicine systems such as Ayurveda or Chinese Medicine. The only difference is that with our modern technology we can produce more potent extracts and create more potent combinations than ever before.
If you are relatively new to food and herbal supplements you need to become aware of the plethora of products available on the market. Check always that the company is following the GMP. Also, make sure that their high-quality claims are supported by certificates.
Become aware of the fact that herbal extracts are the most efficient forms of consuming herbs because of their high potency. Pay attention to different herbal formulations because they provide multiple benefits and enhance the total effect of the supplement.