The combined powers of these three medicinal plants is said to help ease the discomfort and symptoms of the dreaded cold and flu. How this plant combination came about, I am not sure, but I do know that this simple recipe has been around quite awhile. Peppermint, Yarrow and Elder have been used for centuries. Both Yarrow and Peppermint were favored as medicine by Ancient civilizations including the Greeks and Egyptians. And Elderflower is well documented throughout Old World Europe, including Ancient Greece. Elder was feared and revered, mentioned in many spells and magic, and used as medicine, made into cordials and even carved into musical instruments. The history of any medicinal plant should never be overlooked. Its proof these remedies work, and there is something to be said about the human/plant relationship that was established hundreds, if not thousands of years ago.
After getting to know these three plants a little bit better, it makes sense that they would bring relief to a flu or cold. Here is a quick rundown on each plant.
Peppermint leaf is soothing, cooling and relaxing. It eases spasms of the stomach muscles, and helps ease nausea and indigestion. The antiseptic properties would definitely benefit a respiratory infection, it is diaphoretic properties help cool the body during fever.
Elderflower is a diuretic, which helps increase the production of urine and a diaphoretic which helps the body sweat. These two actions combined would be great to induce during illness because it encourages waste removal, cools the body and helps move water through the organs and systems. Elderflower is widely used during times of respiratory infections, especially upper respiratory and sinus infections.
Yarrow. I am not sure where to begin. It has such a wide array of medicinal power I would consider it a Panacea, a remedy for many difficulties and diseases. From skin to liver to lungs Yarrow flower and leaf seems to benefit and heal so many areas of the body. When it comes to cold and flu, Yarrow can help ease respiratory infections, increase sweating to cool the body, it's a mild sedative, and may ease minor aches and pains.
Elderflower Peppermint Yarrow Tea
Mix equal parts of Elderflower, Peppermint, and Yarrow
Place 1 tsp of the mixture into a cup and add 8 ounces of very hot water.
Cover and steep for at least 5 minutes.