• Lucy Francis

How To: Anti-Inflammatory Herbal Decoction

Updated: Sep 19, 2020

What the heck is a herbal decoction?

A decoction is a type of herbal preparation, created by boiling herbs in liquid, usually water. Herbal decoctions can involve multiple parts of a plant (ie. roots, leaves, bark, seeds and berries) for varying concentrations and differing phytochemicals by which the the water soluble ones can be extracted into a concentrated solution.

I guess you can think of a decoction as more of a ‘badass version’, of the humble lemon + ginger that we typically reach for when suffering the common cold!

This decoction blend is potent! I created it with a purpose in mind for an all rounder anti-inflammatory, containing compounds beneficial for joint health, glowing skin and supporting healthy digestion, including:

Fresh Turmeric Root:

Contains bio-active constituent curcumin, a powerful antioxidant with the ability to increase glutathione activity (our ‘master antioxidant’) and inhibit TNF (an inflammatory cytokine).

Fresh Ginger Root: 

The phenolic compounds in ginger have a stimulative action for saliva and bile production, helping to increase motility through the gastrointestinal tube for supporting digestion and elimination.

Hemp Seeds + Cinnamon:

Hemp is rich in the mineral magnesium and a compound called gamma linolenic acid (GLA), an essential omega 6 anti-inflammatory molecule with growing research suggesting benefits for the skin structure and hormonal support. Extracts of cinnamon polyphenols have been shown to help improve glucose control, plus it tastes amazing which is a bonus!

How do I consume it?

So once this blend is made, you can drink the decoction as it is, or alternatively you could use it as a base for smoothies which works well.

You can consume it on an empty stomach, first thing in the morning before breakfast – I personally added a squeeze of lemon juice in fresh to take the slight bitter edge off  (I’m telling you it’s a potent blend), which worked perfectly!

It might sound a bit of a faff but it’s actually very simple to create.


4 sticks of cinnamon bark

4 roots of fresh turmeric, roughly chopped

1 large chunk of fresh ginger root, sliced

1.5 tbsp hemp seeds

1 nutmeg seed

1 dessert spoon of black peppercorns

850ml-1L water (enough to fill up a large saucepan)


Add the bark, roots and seeds to a saucepan and fill it up with cold water.

Bring the water to the boil and then simmer for 45 mins (minimum) to 1 + 1/2 hour with the lid on to keep the nutrients trapped in.

Strain the concentrated, highly pigmented liquid into a glass bottle or container and let the decoction cool to drinking temperature.

Keep in the fridge and consume within 3-4 days.

Note: Some herbs can have a toxic effect for people on certain medications due to drug-nutrient interactions. I’d recommend consulting a nutrition practitioner or herbalist for finding herbs most beneficial for you to make the most out of them.

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