You’re not the first person to have questions about herbs and herbalism. So, we brought in one of our experts to help answer some of the most common questions and concerns. David Bunting, Herb Pharm’s VP of Botanical Affairs, began studying herbalism in 1979 and has been making herbal medicines professionally since 1982.
Question: What’s the difference between whole herb and standardized extracts?
Capsules can be highly variable, containing any of several types of herbal material from powdered herb to concentrated liquid extract to dried powdered extract. One of the primary distinguishing features of capsules is the fact that they mask taste. While this may seem like an advantage, smelling and tasting herbs, like smelling and tasting food, is an important component of our interface with them. Even the color impression of an herb has an effect. The sensory experience initiates a cascade of effects and reinforces our connection to the herbs and to their source, Nature. This very important but often overlooked connection is where liquids have the advantage. There are cases where the taste of an herbal extract may interfere with a person’s willingness to take an herb. In this case, capsules have the advantage over liquids.