As I mentioned awhile back on my Facebook page, I spent the last month taking part in the #BeatTheFlu Challenge with other Canadian health and wellness bloggers. The challenge was hosted by A.Vogel Canada (you may remember other A.Vogel challenges I’ve participated involving sprouts and tonics), and featured two of their cold and flu products from the Echinaforce line – the Echniaforce Tincture and Hot Drink. Given the fact that I had a nasty bout of the flu last year, and my places of employment put me in contact with people who may be ill themselves, I figured why not give myself a little extra immunity boost!
The Echinaforce line of products feature Echinacea, a plant traditionally used for its immune system stimulating properties. Some studies have shown success in helping to prevent cold and flu compared to placebo trials, but it can vary with the specific Echinacea species, the part of the plant used, and how the plant is prepared for use. A.Vogel uses fresh Echinacea purpurea plants, organically grown, within 24 hours of harvest to prepare their extracts. It’s safe to take on a daily basis for 4 months, but you should always check with your health care professional for interactions with other medications you may be taking. Their website has more information about their products if you are interested in the specific details.
The challenge itself was pretty simple – take the recommended dosage for 30 days of both the tincture and hot drink, and report back on how things went. So…how did they go?
Well…things went well for the most part. Until the very last few days, when some sort of plague took over me, and I found myself down for the count. Does that mean they don’t work? I wouldn’t be so quick to say that. The Echinaforce products don’t claim to cure you of all your ails or that you will never get sick again. They are simply there to boost your immunity, reduce the occurrence of infections, and help relieve symptoms. Given that it is flu season, and I’m in a much colder climate than I’m used to, spending more time indoors in close quarters with people, and just the stress of moving, starting a new job, and all that jazz – I’m pretty sure my immune system was already taxed. I never found it hassle to take the products – the hot drink was super tasty (sort of black current flavoured). I actually looked forward to my nightly mug of the hot drink. The tincture wasn’t bad – it had a very slight medicinal taste when mixed in water, so I would often add it to my morning smoothie, and wouldn’t even notice it. Not sure if this would impact it’s effectiveness, so maybe that’s why I wasn’t completely successful in warding off the flu 😉
Overall, it was an interesting experiment with a natural health product that, while not entirely successful, would make me consider using this product or another like it to continually support my immune system. It also has me wanting to do more research into the whole subject. Thanks for the opportunity A.Vogel Canada!
What are your tried and true tips to #BeatTheFlu? Share in the comments!
Disclaimer – These products were provided to me free of charge. All opinions are my own.