Let’s talk about one of my favorite ways to consume herbal medicine: overnight infusions! I have an entire post dedicated to this style of preparation which you can read right here. An overnight infusion is extremely easy to make – all you have to do is cover herbs with hot water in a mason jar, seal, and let sit overnight for maximum extraction. The particular infusion we’ll be exploring today features one of my all-time favorite restorative herbs, oatstraw.

This stuff is pure love for your adrenals, libido, hair, skin, nails and nervous system. We all know of oatmeal as a delicious food, but did you know the oat plant can also be taken as a powerful medicine?

Oatstraw (specifically derived from the green oats that aren’t quite ripe yet) is a medicinal herb that treats nervous exhaustion and depression, nourishes every nook and cranny of the body & rebuilds the adrenals.

As herbalist 7Song puts it, Oatstraw is for the type of person who has “pushed and pushed and now feels tired, out-of-sorts, or just plain disconnected much of the time no matter how much they rest or sleep.” Hello adrenal fatigue! (Click here to read my entire post on the concept of adrenal fatigue and how to rebalance your HPA axis)

Oatstraw is considered a nutritive tonic as it’s extremely rich in calcium, magnesium, iron, phosphorus, vitamins A, C, E and essential amino acids. It’s also high in silica, a main component of our hair and nails (which helps to keep them strong and free from splitting). Lastly, Oatstraw contains abundant B vitamins, which the body rapidly loses during times of stress– one of the many reasons why this plant is so good at feeding and restoring our nerves!

This gentle, restorative herb is for those that are cold, depleted, or tired… or for the type of person who drinks too much coffee and is chronically burnt out. In the long term, its nutrient content replenishes an exhausted nervous system. In the short term, it’s supremely calming, soothing, and strengthening. Oatstraw increases sex drive by functioning as a gentle aphrodisiac that rebuilds that deep kidney/adrenal energy required for libido (and ultimately, reproduction!) Susun Weed explains further that it enhances “sensitivity to pleasant stimuli,” making it important especially for women who have difficulty feeling pleasure.


1. BRAIN – improves attention span, decreases brain fog, boosts mental capacity and concentration (the silica content is actually really helpful for this and on a deeper level boosts intuition)
2. ADRENALS – a restorative tonic for anyone who feels chronically tired, stressed, depressed, frazzled, overworked, or exhausted
3. DEPRESSION – helps fend off depression by way of strengthening the central nervous system
4. LYMPHATIC STAGNATION/SWELLING – acts as a gentle diuretic which is helpful for reducing inflammation, kidney stones, urinary tract infections, water retention, edema, and lymphatic swelling
5. GUT HEALTH – also fantastic for your GI tract, as it is full of soothing mucilage to protect and nourish your gut’s mucosal layer
6. BONES & TEETH – the high mineral content helps build, maintain and even repair bones and teeth (so it’s excellent for kids!)
7. MENSTRUAL CRAMPS – oatstraw is rich in magnesium, which helps calm and soothe painful menstrual cramps & hormonal headaches


In order to get the most out of oatstraw, you need time, heat, and a good amount of plant matter so your tonic is packed with minerals. Sounds complicated but all you need to do is prepare an overnight infusion.

1. Pack a large mason jar halfway with oatstraw.
2. Fill the jar to the top with just-boiled water.
3. Seal it tight, give it a good shake, and let it rest on the counter overnight.
4. In the morning, strain all the plant matter and either sip on your tonic at room temp, reheat it on the stove, or add ice. I also add lemon and a touch of honey! You can rebrew the same plant material two or even three times until the liquid no longer contains a rich smell or pigment.

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1 Comment

  • Kate Powell says:

    Hi Oliva,
    I just wanted to know whether hot water could potentially damage the mucilage properties? I have seen that herbs like marshmallow are best done with a cold water to extract mainly the mucilaginous polysaccharides. Does this apply to Oat Straw too, or will you still retain those benefits when using hot water?
    Love your work!
    Kate x

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