It’s been a while, I know! But it’s been one hectic summer full of family trips, homeschool lessons, garden tending, and whatever other miscellaneous projects that arise between any of the 3 kiddos. As is, I’m usually up in the wee hours of the night trying to catch up on housework – and GASP! – I’ve even got a yarrow infusion that’s been ready to strain for over a month now, that’s still waiting. I know, right?? I’m usually counting the minutes until they’re ready so I can bottle it up. So, that pretty much sums up how busy we’ve been.
Hope everyone’s had a great summer so far – as for us, we’re looking forward to Fall!
Ok, so let’s get on with today’s post – homemade vitamin making 101! I thought this post would be such a treat for you guys because it’s so easy, so healthy for you, and SO FUN! (Ok, for a geek like me, it’s thrilling)
So, while on vacation this summer, to make sure I had my daily smoothie with all sorts of herbal goodness in it, that meant a lot of planning. Preparing/packing individual bags of herb mixture – packing my Nutri Bullet to blend it all with – packing straws, coconut water, and spare cups in case we were on the road. It was cumbersome, but worth it, considering the natural options we had on the road during our almost 3-week long trip. Then there was the few times, rushing out in the morning to hit the road, that I just didn’t have the time to make our smoothies. So I had to lug my blender into gas stations and ask to borrow their outlets because our van outlet didn’t have enough juice to power the blender on. Not fun. Washing the blender each time we used it – not fun. Again, worth it. But guess what? Through all that hassle, my husband had maaaybe one or two out of 20 smoothies I had made everyone else. You see, he, like most guys, just doesn’t like the taste of anything good for him. And it really bothers me – especially when I see those organic veggies left on his plate every night – but mostly, when he complains of aches, pains, and “getting old”. Yea..he’s 32. No excuses buddy.
So taking all the above into account, I thought, there’s just got to be a better way. A better way to make sure he gets what he needs – and even I do. Because come on, even I get sick of spirulina flavored smoothies sometimes. I’ll do it, but I’m sure there were days when I was putting less in there than I could have really used, for the sake of the flavor.
So, what else is there? The answer? Homemade vitamins!
This is SO easy guys, you’re going to love it! I went on Mountain Rose Herb’s website, and found the neatest gadget called The Capsule Machine. I thought, “what a cool idea!” Making your own vitamins, who would have thought? My mind was already racing, thinking of all the vitamins I could make for us that would:
1) Save us money
2) Make us healthier
3) Ensure my husband was finally getting his nutrients!
4) Let me control exactly what was in our vitamins (because even the best brands sometimes have soy, titanium dioxide, magnesium stearate, etc) Really??
Not to mention, a lot of the vitamins that are pre-made have herbal material that has been sitting on the shelf for a year or more. Grinding and capsuling your own vitamins ensures you’re getting fresh nutrients – and, I’d like to add, using herbs instead of isolated nutrients ensures you are getting the best absorption with cofactors from “food” rather than stuff that could have been put together in a lab.
Ok, so here we go! I ordered the machine and gave it a whirl. It was just as easy as advertised, and before I knew it, I had bottles of homemade vitamins!
First pick your machine – they run in size “0” and “00”. Size 0 capsules are more the standard and contain 400-800 mg of nutrients, depending on whether you use the tamper included with the machine. You’d obviously get a lot closer to the 800 mark if you tampered and added more a couple times. Size 00 capsules are 550-1,100 mg of nutrient, again, depending on how much or little you use the tamper. Once you decide what size capsule machine you want, get the same size capsules. Lastly, pick out what kind of vitamins you want to make, and get your herbs!
Ready?? Let’s go!
My test run was a batch of spirulina capsules. I really thought my husband would benefit from this amazing superfood right away since it’s something he usually doesn’t get in his diet.
Once you take your Capsule Machine apart, you will begin loading it with the capsules. The capsules break apart easily, and you will place the longer portion of the capsule into the wider part of the machine (shaped more like a box), set on the rectangular base. The shorter portion of the capsules will go into the thinner part of the machine. Easy enough?
One thing to note – make sure your hands, and the surfaces are completely dry. These capsules are made to disintegrate when getting wet, so if your hands have excess moisture, or the machine is wet, you could jam the capsules, or they will begin to break down. It’s not a fun mess to clean up fyi.
Using a spoon, place your herbs on the box portion of the machine, and use the included card to move it over the holes so the capsule will fill up. Tamper down if desired. Add more herbs, spread it over the holes, and tamper a second time if you wish. Once the capsule bottoms are completely full, take the herb filled half of the machine off the base, and place it onto a flat surface. Place the other half of the machine, containing the empty capsule tops, and place it on top. Press down until all four sides softly snap together.
Pull the top half off the bottom half and voila!!
Now you will push on the top of the piece containing your capsules, and they will pop right out!
Store your homemade vitamins in an airtight container – you may want to begin saving your empty vitamin bottles now!
Admit it, I was right. This IS FUN!! Now, what else to make?? After a not-so long deliberation, I came up with the following “to make” list:
Rosehips (EXCELLENT vitamin C supplement!) Ten minutes after taking my 1st two capsules, the drainage I had been fighting with store-bought vitamin C for the past week dried up like magic. You could even add acerola powder for added vitamin C variety.
Stinging Nettle – I’m making this a super green supplement with my home grown and dehydrated kale from this Spring!
Burdock Root – Great for regulating blood sugar, and potent blood cleanser.
Turmeric – mix with some black pepper for much better absorption than turmeric alone.
Beet Root Powder – rich in betaine, which aids your liver and kidneys in processing SAM-e. Also a natural source of beneficial nitrates.
Hawthorn Berries – GREAT for your heart health!
Calcium – you can make your own calcium powder using eggshells, and a pinch of nettles!
I’m far from done brainstorming all the possibilities, but this project will keep me busy for a little while.
All powders, capsules, and the machine itself can be purchased from Mountain Rose Herbs. This is an affiliate link, by the way. If you choose to purchase from Mountain Rose Herbs using these links, or the link on my main website page, they will send me a small portion of all sales made through those links to go towards the upkeep of this website. So if you like what you read, I would appreciate the support!
Hope this post inspires everyone to start their own homemade vitamin-making projects! And if you come up with any herbal blend “recipes” you’d like to share, feel free to comment on this post!