Autumn Elderberry Immune Bars

September 12, 2019

You may be a worrier, or maybe not. If you’re a parent, when a toddler decides to suck on a dog toy or shopping cart handle, you may panic, or you may shrug, saying “That should help develop their immune system.” I’ve seen both reactions.

Regardless, when our daycare or school-attending kiddos take “sick days,” we may worry—about their immunity, missing learning activities, feeling terrible, potentially infecting others, and causing us to take unplanned “sick days” too.

Resilient, healthy children are a worthwhile goal for these reasons and countless more.

Dr. William Li, a medical scientist and physician, has a book called Eat to Beat Disease that explains how food can benefit the health of the whole family. After reading Dr. Li’s book and watching his TED talk, I was excited when I had the chance to attend a live lecture!

It motivated me to create recipes filled with powerful ingredients. Here is one, made with kiddos in mind but suitable for all.

Look at the immune-supportive nutrients in these bars!

ANTHOCYANINS: elderberry

Purple pigmented flavonoids that strengthen cells against oxidative damage, inhibit virus replication and help to relieve respiratory symptoms of colds and flus*


A polysaccharide fiber with antimicrobial and antioxidant effects* 

CAROTENOIDS: elderberry, pumpkin

Vitamin A precursors that raise natural killer cells and helper-T cells to strengthen the immune system*


Special flavonoids in cocoa that support the cardiovascular system and have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects in the colon*

SELENIUM: chickpeas, oats

A mineral that increases virus-fighting, natural killer cells*

VITAMIN C: chickpeas, elderberry, pumpkin

A vitamin that supports many cellular functions and accumulates in phagocytes, ultimately helping to kill bacteria*

VITAMIN E: chickpeas, pumpkin

A vitamin that enhances the creation of bacteria-fighting antibodies in immune cells*

ZINC: chickpeas, pumpkin seeds

A mineral that increases white blood cell production to strengthen infection-fighting capacity*

Optional Toppings

Elderberry Pumpkin Butter

A healthy frosting for your bars is a great way to use up the extra pumpkin and makes it possible to easily stick chocolate chips or more pumpkin seeds on top!

Remember to use an allergy-friendly substitute for nut butter if you like these bars in lunches—unless nut butter is safe for wherever lunch will be eaten.

  • 4 tbsp nut butter or allergy-friendly sub
  • 3 tbsp canned or pureed pumpkin
  • ½ tsp cinnamon
  • 1 scoop Flora Elderberry Crystals
  • Optional: sweetener of choice, to taste

Other ideas: chocolate chips, pumpkin seeds, sprinkle of salt

Dana Green Remedios, RHN, RNCP, NNCP, is a Vancouver-based educator and coach. She is a regular contributor to the FloraHealthy blog and can answer your questions in English, French, and Spanish as a Product Information Specialist at Flora.

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