Proper dosing of tinctures for children
I purchased a bottle of saffron extract to try for my son, and the liquid tincture contains 970 mg per 1 ml, but is equivalent to 330 mg dry herb per ml. Extraction rate is 1/3. If I wanted to give my son the clinically tested dose of 20-30 mg for a child, would I use the liquid measurement or the dry herb measurement?
Hello and thank you for your question! Herbal extracts are produced by placing an herb (dry or fresh) in a ratio to extracting liquid (aka menstruum). From the information you gave and from my understanding, the extract was produced with enough herb to yield a resulting ratio of 1:3 (approximately 330 mg/ml).
In order to do this, because the dried herb will be removed, manufacturers of herbal products will quantify how much of the dried herb will need to be used to yield the desired ratio of 1:3. In the case of this product, they used 970 mg of herb and added it to (macerated it in) the menstruum. After removing the herb from the menstruum, the resulting extract was found to be 330 mg/ml. To figure out how much to give, I divided the dose you need (20-30mg) by the dry herb amount (330mg). There are 20 drops in one ml and therefore the resulting dose would be a little over one drop of extract (1.2-1.8 drops to be exact).
Since it isn’t possible to give less than one drop, I would recommend sticking to one drop per dose unless you have a way to measure volumes less than a milliliter. Hope this helps!
Amani is a licensed pharmacist who also holds a Masters Degree in herbal medicine. She currently resides in Dallas, TX where she’s a student at an Islamic seminary. When she’s not in class, she enjoys writing (combining her love of writing and herbs as a blogger on ATH), planting/gardening with friends, and learning all sorts of new things through reading and listening.