Camille is a licensed aesthetician and operator of Autumn Moon Aesthetics. Her holistic skin care practice incorporates natural, handmade products, herbal therapy, aromatherapy and energetic bodywork. She encourages individuals to become more connected to their body and the Earth by creating natural products themselves at home. Visit her blog at www.skincareforyoursoul.blogspot.com.
Here in Michigan, the cold season is in full effect. Although my family has been quite healthy this winter (knock on wood!), I like to have cold remedies on hand to be prepared when the need arises.
One of our favorite ways to alleviate cold symptoms is with a warm herbal infusion. Since my daughters are still quite young, elderflower is our plant friend of choice, providing safe relief that is tasty for little ones. A warm elderflower infusion acts to gently break up congestion in the lungs and sinuses. Being a diaphoretic, elderflower also encourages perspiration, which can in turn assist in lowering a fever by cooling the body.
(Click here to view a picture of American elderflower.)
While an elderflower infusion is absolutely amazing just on its own, my daughters and I decided to play around with some additional ingredients to make it even lovelier. The ingredients were all purchased both easily and affordably in the bulk section of our local health foods store.
The strawberries, elderberries and orange peel give the blend a sweet, happy, fruity flavor, while the rosehips and hibiscus add a punch of tartness packed with vitamin C.
This delightfully sweet blend of flowers, fruits and berries soothes cold symptoms.
Photo by Camille Leinbach
Fruity Elderflower Cold Relief Blend
• 1/2 cup dried organic elderflower blossoms
• 3 tablespoons dried organic pink rose petals (be sure to use edible, food grade roses)
• 3 tablespoons freeze dried strawberries
• 3 teaspoons dried organic elderberries
• 2 teaspoons dried organic hibiscus
• 1 1/2 teaspoons dried organic orange peel
• 1 teaspoon dried organic rosehips (crushed)
• 1 teaspoon dried organic rosehips (whole)
1. Stir all ingredients in a small bowl, then package in an airtight storage container.
2. To make the infusion, fill a tea ball with the blend and place it in your favorite mug.
3. Pour near-boiling water into the mug and cover. Allow the blend to infuse for 10 minutes and drink while still warm.
As a side note, this infusion creates a lovely shade of red that I actually also used to add a bit of subtle color to my strawberry blonde hair. I simply poured it onto my dry hair and let it sit for about a half hour before rinsing out. A great use for any leftover tea!