Cold season is officially upon us, and if you’ve ventured out around the Salt Lake Valley lately, you’ve probably noticed that the air is mucky with accumulated smog. Dirty air, cold weather, and holiday stresses are the perfect storm to get even the healthiest among us down in bed for a week with the sickies, so we want to introduce you to two powerhouse herbs that can help you stay well all season long!
There is likely no herb possessing greater fame during cold season than Elder. This beautiful tree (Sambucas nigra) is native to both North America and Europe where it likely originated. It’s been used since time immemorial as a celebrated stimulant to the immune system that can help fortify our own natural defenses so that we are shielded from whatever may be going around.
Elder is incredibly gentle, and for this reason is a favorite among parents who want to help keep their kids well. Unlike many more heroic immune stimulants, Elder modulates in a way that doesn’t seem to tax even the most delicate of systems.
In herbalism, we work with both the flowers and the berries of the Elder tree. Generally Elder Berries are made into syrup which can be taken by the spoonful throughout the cold and flu season as a time honored preventative. The flowers are used more as an herbal tea or respiratory steam to help take the protection where it’s needed most. Here in the shop we love creating aromatic respiratory steams that feature herbs like Elder Flowers, Thyme, Mullein, and Elecampane Root.
Another of our favorite immune-supporting herbs is Echinacea. There are many varieties of this beautiful plant that are considered to be medicinal in nature, but our favorite is Echinacea angustifola both because of its potency and because of its many years of historical use.
We work with Echinacea when there is clear danger of contracting seasonal sickies. If someone you live with, work with, or travel with has come down with a common cold or flu, it may be time to reach for the Echinacea! The root of this plant gets to work supporting the immune system, providing antimicrobial action, and boosting the self-care abilities of the respiratory system. If you aren’t actually sick, just 10 drops of Echinacea Root tincture every morning can keep you feeling fantastic.
We stock a variety of tincture and tea blends that put Echinacea in the spotlight while bolstering it with other immune and seasonally supportive herbs.
A Few More Cold Season Allies
There are so many herbs that can help us get through the cold season- each has an affinity for specific people and will work best when aligned to your own unique constitution and wellness needs. Stop in anytime and we’ll help you find your match!
There is perhaps no more famous an herb than Mullein as a protective and nourishing tonic for the respiratory system. When air is dirty and the lungs and sinuses seem taxed, Mullein leaves can be a fantastic everyday tea to help fortify, protect, and support.
We love working with Yerba Santa when lungs and sinuses are wet, congested, and heavy. This drying and warming herb helps conduct other wellness herbs into the lungs while cleansing and clearing. Blended with Elecampane and Yerba Mansa it helps clear out the gunk while soothing and nourishing.
When airways, sinuses, and lungs feel dry and angry, we often turn to Coltsfoot to help deliver protection and soothing qualities. Paired with Mullein and Comfrey Leaf it can be one of the most fantastic herbs for an inflamed, dry respiratory tract.
Statements made herein are for educational purposes and are not intended to treat, prevent, cure, or diagnose any illness. This information is not a replacement for that given by a licensed medical or mental healthcare provider. Consult such a provider before adding herbs to your wellness program.