What is Herbal Medicine? | Apotheka Herbal Store Victoria & Vancouver

To put it simply, herbal medicine is really old, really widespread, and really effective. 

Plants have a multitude of medicinal properties that can produce therapeutic effects; herbal medicine is the oldest form of medicine that there is.

Various herbs used in herbal medicine pictured, including lavender and chamomile.

It’s also a cornerstone of mainstream medicine.

After all, today’s pharmaceuticals didn’t materialize out of thin air. Many drugs are derived from specific plant constituents. The difference with herbal medicine is that each plant contains a varied amount and number of medicinal components that make it more effective at treating the whole person. Aiding the body holistically, herbal medicine can provide a means of treating many symptoms and conditions that pharmaceuticals do not effectively address.

Herbal medicine also means choice.

We prepare the medicines in a variety of forms which can include herbal tinctures, capsules, dried teas, salves, creams, and syrups. Each form is selected according to its specific purpose and the chemicals required to achieve the desired effect.

It is important to note that although herbs can offer support in many ways, we have to remember that it is one part of the puzzle when it comes to restoring balance in one's life. That being said, we practice in an integrative way to ensure we are giving you all the tools you need to feel better.


Medical Herbalist Heather Newman enjoying a cup of custom blend tea.


Tinctures are a form of herbal medicine that works quickly and effectively. There are many different types of tinctures and a number of different ways to make them.

The professional-grade tinctures we carry here at Apotheka are hydroethanolic extractions of plants. This is a fancy way of saying certain chemicals were pulled out of the plant matter using water and alcohol. The plant material is harvested for this purpose. Whether it’s the flowers, leaves, fruit, bark, roots or another part will depend on the plant and what kind of medicine is required. 

The plant material is soaked in a certain ratio of liquid. The alcohol percentage will also vary depending on what chemicals we are trying to extract. Sometimes you might find a couple of different versions of tinctures for the same plant. This can be due to different plant parts being used, such as nettle leaf and nettle root for instance. It can also be due to different ratios or alcohol percentages, having a fresh or dried version of a tincture, and other possible reasons. Don’t be shy to ask your herbalist for more clarification. 

At Apotheka, we make it our mission to carry the highest quality when it comes to herbal medicine. The majority of our tinctures are organic, made from fresh plant material and have a strong ratio which means you can take less tincture. 



If you’re looking for safer and more customized ways of supporting your health, explore herbal medicine with us.


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