Fight off Winter Viruses with Elderberry Syrup
Elderberry (Sambucus Nigra)has been used for years and is currently prescribed in European countries as a remedy to flu and respiratory illness. Elderberries are a potent source of minerals and biochemicals that support immunity. The antiviral properties of this dark berry boost the immune system and can help in both prevention and recovery from viral illnesses, especially viruses with flu like symptoms. I recommend taking1 Tablespoon a day with tea for the entire winter season*
- Flavonoids, including quercetin and anthocyanins, in elderberries act as strong antioxidants and protect cells from oxidative damage and inflammation 
- Vitamins A, some B, and C are concentrated in elderberries. Most of the B and C vitamins are denatured when the berries are heated, but the high amount of Vitamin A is a fat soluble vitamin and therefore heat stable. Vitamin A is vital for a well functioning immune system [2,3]
- Several studies have confirmed the dramatic healing results of elderberry syrup taken in cases of flu or viral illness 
Montana homesteader has a great in depth recipe for homemade elderberry syrup. When I make it, I cut the amount of honey in half for my taste preferences and added sugar consumption goals. I also added a pinch of himalayan sea salt to balance the sweetness and add a variety of electrolytes.
*Raw berries contain toxins similar to cyanide so the berries must be cooked. The leaves and stems of the plant are also toxic. Consult with your healthcare provider to see if this remedy is a good fit for you.
Revitalize Dry Skin with Rose Hip Vitamin E Salve
Rose hips are a naturally concentrated source of vitamin A and vitamin C and are known for revitalizing tired skin and its therapeutic antioxidant affects.
- The astringent qualities of rose hip tighten and brighten the appearance of cells while the soothing oil moisturizes
- Vitamin A is a fat soluble antioxidant that prepares and restores skin minimizing the appearance of scars and fine lines. 
- Rosehips contain many other complex antioxidants including carotenoids, flavonoids, and polyphenols. 
Vitamin E is a fat soluble vitamin and can therefore be easily absorbed through the skin. It fights of free radicals that damage and age skin and seals in moisture which prevents cell crenulation and wrinkles. 
I infused my own rose hip oil with rose hips harvested from the nearby Colorado Trail. Because they are wild, they are much small than the version you see at the grocery store. Either type will work but make sure you know how to identify the rose plant before harvesting any hips!
The next step is to mix the rose hip oil with vitamin E oil and a base of mango butter to make a rejuvenating and moisturizing face lotion or salve.
Rose Bud & Licorice Herbal Infusion
Infusions are a great way to increase water consumption which alone promotes a healthy metabolism, higher energy, and more youthful skin. When you add infusions to the mix you get the benefits of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants too!
- The delicate taste and aroma of dried rosebuds is calming and delightful!
- Drinking a cup of rose bud tea daily will improve the youthfulness and elasticity of your skin. The same beneficial biochemicals that are found in rose hips are also found in the buds.
- Licorice root adds a luxurious sweetness that complements rose buds beautifully
- Licorice is soothing and healing to the body’s mucous membranes which is much needed in the dry winter months
- Licorice root also contains many of the same mood boosting chemicals as Saint John’s Wort and can balance mood and stabilize blood sugar.
Thanks for Reading! What are your stand by remedies for the fall and winter months?
 University of Maryland Medical Center, Elderberry Article, 2012 http://umm.edu/health/medical/
 Livestrong.com Elderberry Article 2013