The Taste Of Herbs Are Important
When was the last time you asked yourself: “Is this the best way for me to take herbs?” then, have you ever asked yourself: “Am I able to taste these herbs?”, if you’ve answered no to these, then I want to explain why herbal capsules are not your best solution for getting your herbal intake and why being able to taste your herbs is actually going to raise the medicinal value for your needs.
When I first started my herbal journey a few years ago I was obsessed with taking herbs every single day. Most times I wasn’t sure why I was taking a particular herb, but just because I really wanted to be sure I was interacting with plants daily. Not the smartest thing I’ve done, but it’s where most of us start. Especially herbal capsules, they were so convenient for me to take just before a meal or right before I went to bed. There was no worrying about mixing up a tea, it was just the simple reach that herbal capsules gave me. Little did I know I wasn’t actually doing the herbs justice, and no wonder I didn’t notice much of a difference in those years.
When You Should Use Capsules
Let’s get one thing straight, taking herbs in capsule form IS simple and convenient, not to mention, still a great way to get your herbal intake. If you’re powdering your herbs or already have a bunch of herbs powdered in your cabinet, the best way to prepare those herbs in most cases is by pill form. Encapsulating herbs is easiest when they are down to a fine powder, and they pack really well. However, another reason to consider why you should be using a capsule is by where within the body you are wishing to address with herbs. For instance, you won’t use capsules for a skin rash or a sore throat; that’s a job for a salve, tea or syrup. Because capsules are only to be digested, it’s safe to say that for the most part we are wishing to address the gut where it will dissolve and break down.
If you want to go the Electuary Pastille route, find that article here.
When You Shouldn’t Use Capsules
Let’s wind back to our earlier statement when I said that you wouldn’t use herbal capsules to address a skin rash or a sore throat, okay got it. But, is there even more of a reason why you shouldn’t resort to packing your herbs into pills, besides expelling herbs through our gut? Truthfully, yes. It’s all about taste. Now you may be wondering, taste? Why? Especially if you have been around the block to notice that sometimes herbs can taste downright disgusting. Hello ashwagandha and triphala, I’m talking to you.
Taste is such an undervalued component. When we look at the taste of an herb we are asking ourselves a few things. Is it bitter? Is it pungent? Is it sour? Is it sweet? Is it salty? Is it astringent? Taste tells us not only what we are ingesting, but it tells us what the physical and energetic qualities are of that herb. It represents more than what most of us know.
The Importance Of Rasa, (taste)
We classify herbs into six different categories for taste: Bitter, Pungent, Salty, Sour, Sweet, Astringent.
Each taste holds an elemental quality: Bitter- Air & Ether, Pungent- Fire & Air, Salty- Water & Fire, Sour- Earth & Fire, Sweet- Earth & Water, Astringent- Air & Earth.
With knowing this information, we are able to have a deeper knowledge of how herbs are classified in this way, and how we can support our bodies. As with most things, the combination of tastes that’s right for you depends a lot on your constitution, your imbalances and your environment. A balanced individual will incorporate all 6 tastes into their diet. Have you ever wondered why we have been cultured to eat a salad right before a meal? That’s because leafy greens fall into the bitter category and the actual taste of something bitter awakens our digestive system to work more efficiently for us. Our ancestors were onto something. Our taste buds are extremely active and play a really big role when it comes to communicating with different areas of our body, and by surpassing them with an herbal capsule your body is not able to understand the full context of what you’re wishing for it to do.
So before you start encapsulating your powdered herbs, maybe just ask yourself, why?