We traveled by plane this past week for Thanksgiving and took with us our anti-bacterial hand sanitizer, zinc lozenges, vitamins and Airborne tablets. We’re not paranoid, just cautious. So when my sister-in-law introduced us to Sambucus Elderberry Extract, I was intrigued. She gives her three kids the elderberry extract and takes it herself to stay healthy during the cold & flu season. When I got home, I picked up our own bottle of Nature’s Way Sambucus Black Elderberry Syrup to try. It’s only been two days taking the syrup but after doing some research, I felt inclined to share…Surprisingly, it tastes pretty good – not medicine-like. I’ll write an update in March and let you know if I avoid the flu for the season.
More about Elderberries:
One of the most important health benefits of the elderberry stems from its anti-viral capabilities. These richly colored berries are a good source of flavonoids including quercetin and the anthocyanins. It appears these flavonoids have significant anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects and can activate immune cells that help the body to fight off viruses. The elderberry fruit is also a source of components known as lectins which have been shown in the laboratory to stop replication of ten different strains of the flu virus.
Elderberry extract in the form of Sambucol appears to have activity against some strains of influenza virus. Be cautious when eating elderberries. The unripe fruit, bark, leaves, and stems may contain cyanide which is poisonous. Never eat the green parts of the Elderberry plant. Keep in mind that the anti-viral and anti-flu effects were seen with Sambucol, the elderberry extract, which would be safest form to use for influenza. Always purchase the extract from a reputable source. (I found mine on sale at Whole Foods)