"I’m noticing a lot of tinctures, which are my favorite, seem to have a lot of different herbs or plants added into the mix now. Before it was just straight THC, CBD, etc. Does this make them better or possibly more effective? It seems like the homeopathic isle of Whole Foods is morphing with cannabis."
It depends on what you’re looking to effect, but this is a great question. I actually make a number of herbal elixirs/tinctures which combine cannabis and other therapeutic herbs because, if done right, the synergy of these herbs together combine for much greater effect than if taken alone. You can check out herbabuena.com and review our elixir pages for more information.
Tinctures are a very effective way to ingest medicine. The use of cannabis tincture was widespread in the 1800s and appeared in the US pharmacopeia until 1942. The absorption is rapid and begins to occur in the mucous membranes. The addition of other herbs and plants may increase the medicinal properties of the cannabis preparation. An herbalist may be the most qualified person to answer this question and I would reccomend that you direct your question to an experienced herbalist. In herbalism a "simple" is a preparation crafted from one plant, while combinations indicate more than one plant. Often, herbs, plants and medicines will interact to produce effects that are stronger than the sum of their parts (ie they work in synergy). I would also reccomend using your intuition and trying cannabis tinctures alone, and also in combination with other healing herbs. Take note of what works best for you, and be your own doctor!
The synergistic effects or even the entourage effects become even better when cannabis is combined with other herbs and botanicals. As you may already know, many herbs and botanicals share the same common denominators of terpenes.
Tinctures are usually made with a high grade of alcohol, like grape or cane alcohol. The plant is then macerated/crushed, and immersed in the tincture for a particular length of time. During this time, the alcohol-soluble components of the plant (cannnabinoids and terpenes, and many more) are then slowly released and leached from the the plant material. People perform other processes to get the most benefits from the plant into the alcohol and that is their "secret sauce" in creating a wonderful tincture.
If you are looking to treat yourself for a particular ailment, it’s best to identify what works for you. That would be hard to do if tinctures contain many herbs. It’s akin to creating a marinade that has too many ingredients, and nature’s magnificence is lost. Sometimes simple is the way to go.
If you’re looking for overall vitality and no ailments, then herb combination with cannabinoids might be a solution.
As a scrutinizing consumer, I would wonder where the formulator got the additional herbs, if they have experience in working with and combining herbs, and why the herbs will help. I’d also look for clear and professionally documented labels. I’ve personally seen some products in the cannabis industry that would just say "Women’s Relief" or something like that and not much other info.
I always like to know the credentials of who created the products.
Good luck. Let your nose be your guide in some cases. Your animal instincts will tell you a lot, if you listen.