Winter has become synonymous with colds and flus, and viruses are passed around quicker than gossip at TMZ. While some people still revert to over-the-counter cold & flu medications to manage symptoms, others have realized the effectiveness of natural remedies, such as elderberry extracts or syrups.
There is obviously a time and place for conventional medicine, but regular medicine won’t do much for a mild cold or flu. Colds are miserable and all you want to do is fix them as soon as possible. This is why many people turn to elderberries, which have been known to boost immune function and fight upper respiratory infections. Of the many lozenges, gummies, pills, teas, and extracts that contain elderberry, which ones have excess sugar or added chemicals? It can be hard to determine this, which is why we encourage you to make your own.
Studies On Elderberry
- One randomized study with 60 adults, who had flu-like symptoms, gave half of the patients placebo syrup and the other half 15 ml of elderberry syrup four times a day. The group that took elderberry syrup found that symptoms cleared up four days earlier than the people who took the placebo syrup.
- A 2010 study looked at the effects of elderberry extract on immunoresponse in genes. The findings indicated that elderberry extract has antiviral properties that activate the immune system by increasing cytokine production. This means that elderberry extract may be beneficial for activating inflammatory responses in people with various illnesses.
- Madeleine Mumcuoglu of Hadassah-Hebrew University in Israel found that elderberry works to neutralize viruses that penetrate healthy cells in the nose and throat. Sometimes, the virus infects the body before prevention. In this case, elderberry extract helps prevent the virus from spreading throughout the respiratory system.
Benefits of Elderberry
Rich in vitamins A, B, and C, elderberries have the natural ability to boost immune function. The complex sugars in elderberries work to fight colds and flus by supporting the immune system. While the elderberries help to support immune function, you can support their efforts to accelerate recovery by eating foods that are rich in vitamins C, B6, and E. Try and eat plant-based foods as much as possible to absorb the most nutrients.
DIY Elderberry Syrup
- 4 slices ginger root
- ½ lemon
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 6 cloves
- 1 cup dried elderberries
- 4 cups filtered water
- 1 cup organic raw honey
- Add all of the ingredients to the Instant Pot, place the lid on, and set the vent to the “Sealing” position.
- Cook on “Manual” for 10 minutes and then do a quick pressure release. Remove the lid and set your Instant Pot to “Saute” in order to boil the syrup.
- Boil the syrup for 10 minutes until half reduces the liquid. Turn off the Instant Pot and pour the syrup through a mesh strainer into a bowl, mashing the berries to release all the liquid.
- Through the berries away after you mash them because they are not safe to eat. Store in a dropper bottle and take a dropper full when you are under the weather.