Stephanie Hein is a Certified Clinical Herbalist, Reiki Energy Healer, and Yoga teacher. She has studied herbalism for 7 years and sharing her knowledge with others has become her greatest passion. The Shift Doctors (Tracy Latz, M.D. & Marion Ross, Ph.D.) had the pleasure of spending 2 days in the Appalachian Mountain forests of North Carolina with Stephanie during a Medicinal & Healing Plants course. She currently works as the Supplement Coordinator at the Natural Vitality Center in Greensboro, NC. She works alongside one of the nations top Integrative Medical Doctors, Dr. Elizabeth Vaughan. When working with clients she strives to recognize the entire body, mind, and spirit connection, before offering herbal direction. Find out more about Stephanie at http://www.rootsnearth.com/
The Wisdom of the Elderberry by Stephanie Hein
Elderberries have been used for thousands of years and are widely known as the “poor person’s medicine chest.” The medicinal use of Elderberry has been documented in Europe, North America, Northern Africa, and in some parts of Asia. In all of these different parts of the world it has been utilized to prevent and cure various different ailments. The early settlers who brought Elderberry Folk knowledge with them to North America quickly identified a similar looking plant known as the American Elder or Sambuca Canadensis. The Native Americans at the time were well acquainted with their own variety of Elderberry, using it as a treatment for fevers. While many of the reported beneficial effects of using Elderberry lack adequate scientific validation, there are an increasing number of studies supporting important medicinal or therapeutic properties associated with Elderberries.
The American Elder is quite common and can be found growing as far north as Nova Scotia and as far south as Florida. Two common places where it likes to grow are along roadsides ditches and especially on the edge of creek and river banks. Elderberry is a deciduous multi-stemmed shrub with brittle branches that easily bend under the weight of its fruit clusters. In North Carolina, it’s beautiful white flowers are followed by fruit clusters beginning in the early fall months of August and September. The berry’s dark blue/purple color comes from its high content of two substances shown to protect against a myriad of human disease, anthocyanin and bioflavonoids. Eating foods rich in these substances has been linked to a long list of favorable health benefits, including the reduction of inflammation, the regulation of immune responses, and decreased capillary fragility.
Along with containing anthocyanin and bioflavonoids, Elderberry has caught the eye of modern day health enthusiast due to its high Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, and B-6 content. These little berries also have a high ORAC value, surpassing the high antioxidant content of both cranberries and blueberries. [Read more…] about The Wisdom of the Elderberry by Stephanie Hein