Beyond Elderberry: Herbal Allies for Cold and Flu Season

Winter is in full swing as we experience the years longest, dampest, darkest nights.  These shifts in the natural cycle of seasons make us increasingly susceptible to contracting common colds and the flu.  Thankfully nature ha provided us with a number of options to help ease our symptoms and hasten recovery. Each has its own unique healing virtues.  For the best results, be sure to research which would be most suited to your constitution.

For those wanting additional support, Will offers in depth and confidential herbal consultations. Getting guidance in choosing a wellness program for you and your family is truly priceless and will give clarity on which herbs to use and how to effectively apply them. 

In this article we wanted to give you some ideas for herbs commonly utilized at this time of year. Consider trying each of these herbs on their own to get a feel for their properties and how they affect you.  You can then experiment with blending them for a full spectrum of healing benefits.

Echinacea Flowering Tops & Roots-  Not long ago, Echinacea was once the most popular remedy for colds, flu, and respiratory ailments.  Although Elderberry is now enjoying the herbal spotlight, Echinacea’s success still prevails.  Using Echinacea as a first line of defense comes from time-honored traditions and is worth investigating.  Many studies have shown it contains immune modulating activity and may be effective at cleansing lymph tissue and the blood. Also known as Purple Coneflower, Echinacea is easy to identify and safe to use in most populations making it a good option for those just beginning their herbal exploration. While we no longer produce Echinacea due to it’s local scarcity, we recommend Herb Pharm’s fluid medicinal extract as their products are one of the highest quality, sustainably sourced ways to buy herbs today.

Yarrow Flowers- Yarrow or the “battle field herb” does more than help arrest bleeding and assist with wounds.  This cooling, diaphoretic herb can be added to open the pores and encourage sweating as a means of easing fever.  It is often blended with other cooling herbs such as Catnip and Mint. 

Jamaican Ginger Root-  Ginger’s healing potential is often overlooked as it has been dismissed for its culinary uses.  Ginger is a mainstay in Traditional Chinese Medicine and can assist with many of the most nagging symptoms associated with seasonal discomfort.   Ginger’s warm, spicy nature makes it stimulating as well as a potent mucus buster. Ginger is often featured in formulas to ease stomach issues and increase the synergy of the other herbs.

Boneset- Boneset has not enjoyed the publicity that Elderberry has but not so long ago it was the remedy of choice for colds and flus.  Native American tribes used Boneset extensively for feverish conditions accompanied by aching bone pain that notoriously accompany flu-like illness.  The American settlers quickly picked up on it as an invaluable remedy.  Boneset likes to grow in damp areas and provides relief to wet, hot conditions such as fever and stagnation. 

Sean Endres

Action and Adventure Sports Filmmaker