A few years ago I became fascinated with immune support medicinal plants, the bioactive compounds that make them that way, and how I could begin incorporating them into my everyday life in an effort to support my immune system. This year more than ever, that has felt essential.

See I had been an avid Emergen-C drinker, but when I learned that in a 9 gram packet, 7 of those grams were refined sugar I knew there had to be a better way. Below are four immune system supporting plants I consume everyday, and the solutions I have come up with to make that consumption as easy and affordable as I could.

Ginger has been used medicinally for thousands of years. It has been used to alleviate nausea, support digestion, and according to studies has shown many anti-inflammatory and antioxidative properties. This is due to the bioactive compound in Ginger called Gingerol (scientists are so creative). That fragrant potent taste and smell you experience when consuming Ginger is Gingerol. Don’t run from that sharp burning flavor, your body will thank you.

Turmeric is closely related to Ginger and is one of the most potent natural inflammation support compounds in the world. This is due to a bioactive compound in the Turmeric called Curcumin. Curcumin is what gives Turmeric that beautiful bright yellow color. Unfortunately, Curcumin is quite difficult for your body to absorb, but don’t worry nature has found another way…

Black Pepper is often found in Turmeric shots and supplements. This is because Black Pepper contains a bioactive compound in it called Piperine. Piperine makes it much easier for your body to absorb Curcumin. Without Piperine much of the Curcumin you consume would pass through your body and be lost, so it’s important to always consume these spices together to receive the most benefit. Make sure any Turmeric shot or supplement you are consuming contains Black Pepper. If not move onto the next.

Cayenne Pepper has also been used medicinally for millennia. This is because Cayenne Pepper contains Capsaicin, an active plant compound that has pain-relieving properties. Capsaicin works by decreasing the intensity of pain signals sent through the body, which is one reason why it’s often an ingredient in things like over-the-counter pain relievers. It also provides a strong punch to the sinuses that helps clear congestion. But be ready, Cayenne Pepper is spicy because of the Capsaicin it contains. I promise it’s worth the burn.

As my fascination with these plants continued, I began frequenting a juice shop down the street from my house and buying a liquid Ginger shot and Turmeric shot almost daily. It quickly became clear that this was not a long-term affordable option. Most juice shops sell an individual shot for anywhere from $5-$7.

Next I bought a juicer but this too was expensive, required an excessive amount of produce, and the clean up was massive. I wasn’t fond of this option either.

I was complaining about these problems to my cousin one day when he had the idea: what if I could source these ingredients in a powder form and create a juice shot, but in the Emergen-C format that I had been so used to.

My first concern here was nutrient deterioration. So I began calling spice vendors and asking them about their Ginger and Turmeric. That’s when I found a vendor who sold Full Spectrum Organic Ginger and Turmeric. You may have heard the word Full Spectrum being thrown around a lot recently, particularly in regards to CBD. All that “Full Spectrum” means is that the nutrients in the plant, in my case Gingerol and Curcumin, are testing at the same levels in a fresh plant as they are in dried powder form. In other words, zero nutrient deterioration.

After sourcing Organic Black Pepper and Cayenne Pepper, as well as dried Organic Oranges, Lemons, and Strawberries, I was ready to begin concocting my own juice shots at a fraction of the price.

This idea was such a hit amongst our friends that my cousin and I ended up building a product line we call Ryla out of these shots and if they sound at all interesting I’d love to give you the opportunity to try them.

Ryla sells for $2 a shot, nearly one third the price of a regular juice shot, and contains organic plants, with no nutrient deterioration, and 500 mg of Vitamin C.

Our boxes contain 20 individual shots, or you can purchase a Variety Pack containing 2 shots of each flavor, so you can try them all out and decide which is your favorite.

Regardless of whether Ryla is the solution for you or not, I sincerely hope you begin incorporating these awesome plants into your diet and life. You will feel better, be healthier, and give your body the support it needs and deserves.

Wishing everyone a great holiday season and be well.

- Chris




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