Common Knowledge:28.What are the solvents?

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Common Knowledge Usually the first solvent we use on a botanical is distilled water. This extracts polar type molecules and those which provide hydrogen bonds. This is followed by an extraction with pure alcohol (ethanol), and sometimes a third organic solvent (non-polar in nature) to dissolve oils, resins and other materials that are not dissolvable in water or alcohol.

28.What are the solvents?

 Usually the first solvent we use on a botanical is distilled water. This extracts polar type molecules and those which provide hydrogen bonds. This is followed by an extraction with pure alcohol (ethanol), and sometimes a third organic solvent (non-polar in nature) to dissolve oils, resins and other materials that are not dissolvable in water or alcohol.

 Most manufacturers mix their water and alcohol in a compromise ratio and do one extraction. This isn't a very good idea because many herbal molecules won't compromise either, especially the organic molecules. For example, a plant resin just won't dissolve in a mixture of alcohol and water. These simple laws of physics and chemistry are not mentioned when medicinal herbs are sold as teas. If an herb owes part of its efficacy to non-water soluble components, then a cup of tea of that herb simply won't work. Therefore, to produce a wholistic extract, we first dissolve all the water solubles, press the herb (collect the extract), and begin a second extraction of the pressed herbal cake, in pure alcohol or other natural non-toxic solvent.

 Then, these organic solvents are collected by pressing after they have dissolved their payload. As mentioned above, if you remove these solvents, the solutes (dissolved phytochemicals) must dissolve into something else or they will precipitate out into a sticky or oily residue. Therefore, we supply a replacement solvent for them which we can then incorporate into an emulsion as the final liquid product. The replacement solvents only need to capture the solutes and hold them in solution until they can be microencapsulated as an emulsion within the water soluble fraction. Glycerol (glycerine) for example isn't a very good solvent. It will not "extract" phytochemicals very well, even water soluble ones. However, in water, it is good for keeping polar solutes in solution as much of the water is removed to concentrate the extract. Likewise, glyceryl monooleate (a combination of glycerol and the unsaturated oleic fatty acid), or linolinic acid, another unsaturated fatty acid, or jojoba oil (a natural wax), aren't good as solvents for extracting organic molecules, however, they are good for holding the solutes for microencapsulation while the extractive volatile solvent (such as alcohol), is being evaporated and removed

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