Waste Free Homeopathy

Part One in a Series on Waste Free Home Remedies*

We’ve had our share of routine winter ailments this winter, and relied heavily on the homeopathic remedies that always seem to help us through the rough patches of croup, snot, sore throats, etc. I was raised by a classical homeopath, but it wasn’t until being pregnant and tending a newborn that homeopathic remedies became my first response to acute ailments. I’m much more of a plant person–I love my  “mother tinctures” and assure you there’ll be much to say about the Green Allies soon enough. For now I just want to share what we do when our little bottles of potentized sugar balls run low.

When I left home, my mother, the homeopath, made sure I had one of these little remedy kits. Just in case of…almost anything. Some of these remedies I’ve never even opened, while others have been used a time or two, and still others get used up frequently. You never know what you’ll need, and it’s handy to be ready for the strange bout of stomach flu at midnight or the high fever or the wasp sting. If you are a regular user of homeopathics, a kit is a wise investment. For some it is simpler to just buy the needed remedies when they are called for–they are readily available these days (but often, you may have noticed, in plastic bottles) and inexpensive. Still, if you go through the remedies that work for you and your loved ones as quickly as we do, you might wonder if there is a way to refill the bottle rather than just tossing it and purchasing a new one. Indeed there is.

You see, homeopathic remedies are a bit like a sourdough culture or vinegar. Except they don’t smell. They have an essence that doesn’t go away, and can be transferred to new sugar balls, which are the carrier for the actual remedy. There are remedies (it is said) that have existed since the 1800s. Maybe even earlier. By adding to your medicine chest a bottle of “blanks” (plain sucrose pellets that can be purchased from homeopathic pharmacies) and a bit of grain alcohol, you are well on your way to keeping your family’s kit alive and well for a few more generations. Because the remedies were originally made using a dilution method and are composed of energy, one more dilution will not weaken them. Nor will it increase or alter the potency in any way. Note: this can only be done with remedies that are 12c or stronger (30c, 200c, etc.). It will not work with lower potency remedies (6c and 6x) because they contain material substance and aren’t pure energy.

The process of transferring a remedy to blank pellets is called “grafting.” Here’s how it’s done: when your bottle of Pulsatilla or Belladonna or whatever it is you use most is about 3/4 empty, put in one or two drops of grain alcohol to wet the remaining balls. The alcohol is a carrier for the remedy, and will transfer it to the blank balls. Refill the bottle from your supply of blank sucrose pellets, leaving a bit of head room at the top. It’s okay if the new pellets are a different size than the old ones. Be careful not to let the blank supply bottle touch the remedy vial. A small envelope or piece of folded paper can work as a funnel. The last step is to shake the refilled bottle by hitting it against your palm a dozen times. This ensures that the blank pellets are coated with the remedy, and activates them.

That’s it!

Another useful thing to know–when taking a remedy it’s not necessary to take the pellets directly under your tongue each time a dose is needed. Instead, place a “dose” into a 1/2 cup of water. A sip of this water then becomes a dose, and can be taken as needed. Not only does this  reduce the amount of remedy that gets used up with each round of sickness, it is considered a superior administration method by many homeopaths.

If you have questions or would like to learn more about homeopathy, please visit the FAQ page at my mom’s website, HomeopathiCare, or at the National Center for Homeopathy website. Both of these sites have recommendations on books and can help you find a homeopath to work with personally.

Two companies I recommend for kits, single remedies, and blank sucrose pellets are Washington Homeopathic Products, and Natural Health Supply.

This company sells organic grain alcohol and vodka, which I highly recommend you keep on hand for this purpose but also for making herbal tinctures. But that, my friends, is a post for another day.


* I just want to be perfectly clear that medicine should never be avoided because of packaging. If we need it, we get it, plastic fast or not. It is great when we can find alternatives and learn to be self reliant, but sometimes we just need that prescription or over the counter drug or the natural remedy in a little plastic bottle. Please take care of yourself and your loved ones as best you can, with whatever means are necessary. Wishing you much health!

7 Replies to “Waste Free Homeopathy”

    1. My top three remedies probably won’t be your top three remedies, because homeopathy is very much about the individual person. Even for a single ailment, several different remedies might be called for. That said, during cold and flu season we relied heavily upon Pulsatilla, Oscillococcinum, Natrum mur, Kali mur, and Ferrum phos.

      The book we have is Everybody’s Guide to Homeopathic Medicine by Steven Cummings and Dana Ullman. It is a helpful guide, but I’ve found working with a homeopath at first is the best way to feel comfortable using remedies on my own.

  1. i am eager to come back and read this when i have a moment. i am interested in exploring more of natural remedies, but i have a fear of purchasing them in bottles and want so much to find my way to them in foods or preparations of my own. such a beginner….

    1. Hi Nicola,
      I really hear what you’re saying about making medicine from the plants on hand and especially letting our food be our medicine. I applaud your family’s efforts along these lines…

  2. Hi. I got this post from a friend recently and purchased some blank pellets and grain alcohol to replenish what I have on hand. I am kind of wondering about the alcohol, when I did put it in and then added the blanks, it kind of made them all stick together and one of my remedies, didn’t really dry. Is this normal? This is my first attempt at doing this. Any input would be hugely helpful. Thank you so much.

    1. Hi Melissa,
      It is okay when they get “wet” like this. Depending on the size of the pellets, or the size of the dropper you use this can be an issue. Next time experiment with using just one drop at first. If even this is too much, perhaps look for a pipette that makes even smaller drops. As for the remedies you have made and are wondering about, you could open the lid for a little while and see if some of the extra alcohol evaporates off. In my experience it does diminish over time, just from opening and closing the vial in normal use. Yes, it can make the pellets more sticky, but if you use the method of putting them into water and taking sips of that as a dose, it shouldn’t be too much trouble. Your remedies are still perfectly good.

  3. Hi, we would like to make homeopathic pellets but are having trouble getting the right alcohol in canada. What percentage does the alcohol need to be.. Is 75.5% grain alcohol okay?

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