Home Made Elderberry Syrup Recipe – Potent Cold & Flu Natural Remedy
People have used elderberry for its health benefits for hundreds of years. Elderberry contains antioxidants, and many believe it can relieve colds, fight the flu, and boost the immune system.What are elderberries?
Eating cooked elderberries may reduce the symptoms of colds and the flu.
Elderberries are the fruit of the Sambucus tree. The most common type is the Sambucus nigra.
The tree has clusters of small white or cream elderflowers and bunches of small blue or black elderberries.
Native Americans and European herbalists have long used elderberries for their supposed range of health benefits. These include boosting the immune system to help the body fight off colds, flu, and other respiratory infections.
Evidence-based health benefits of elderberries
The elderberry contains certain compounds and substances that might have a beneficial impact on health.
We take a look at the evidence behind one of the main reported health benefit of elderberries:
Fighting colds and flu
There is some evidence to support the claim that elderberry can help treat colds and flu, though the available studies are small.
A systematic review from 2010 concluded that elderberries might have antioxidant and antiviral effects, though the authors state that more research is needed.
In one study, 60 people with flu-like symptoms took 15 ml of elderberry syrup four times a day. Their symptoms improved 4 days before the people who took a placebo.
A double-blind, randomized control trial looked at whether elderberry extract could prevent people from experiencing cold-like symptoms after traveling on an airplane. People took lozenges containing 300 mg of elderberry extract and 150 mg of rice flour twice a day for 10 days before traveling. Researchers found that the capsules did not prevent the symptoms, but people who took elderberry had less severe symptoms that lasted for a shorter time.
Dr. Madeleine Mumcuoglu, of Hadassah-Hebrew University in Israel found that elderberry disarms the enzyme viruses use to penetrate healthy cells in the lining of the nose and throat. Taken before infection, it prevents infection. Taken after infection, it prevents spread of the virus through the respiratory tract. In a clinical trial, 20% of study subjects reported significant improvement within 24 hours, 70% by 48 hours, and 90% claimed complete cure in three days. In contrast, subjects receiving the placebo required 6 days to recover.
Elderberry Syrup: Easy Way to Get the Benefits
Elderberry syrup provides the concentrated immune-supporting benefits of black elderberries in a great-tasting way. My homemade recipe uses homemade elderberry concentrate with synergistic herbs like cinnamon and ginger, plus raw honey for an extra immune boost. If you can’t/don’t use honey, you can use as substitute maple syrup.
Several natural elderberry syrupsare available at health stores or online, but usually for around $15 or more for 4-8 ounces. This recipe makes 16 ounces for a cost of under ten dollars and kids love the taste!
You can also fully customize this recipe based on your needs and flavour preferences.
That said, if dried elderberries aren’t available and you’re in a pinch, there are some great pre-made elderberry gummies and elderberry syrupthat work just as well (just cost more). Also, if you happen to have fresh or frozen elderberries on hand, just use double the quantity listed in the recipe.
How to Make Elderberry Syrup to Avoid the Flu
A simple elderberry syrup recipe made with dried elderberries, honey and herbs for an immune boosting and delicious syrup. Can be used medicinally or on homemade pancakes or waffles.
Pour the water into a medium saucepan and add the elderberries, ginger, cinnamon and cloves.
Bring to a boil and then cover and reduce to a simmer for about 45 minutes to 1 hour until the liquid has reduced by almost half.
Remove from heat and let cool until it is cool enough to be handled.
Mash the berries carefully using a spoon or other flat utensil.
Pour through a strainer into a glass jar or bowl.
Discard the elderberries and let the liquid cool to lukewarm.
When it is no longer hot, add the honey and stir well.
When the honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a mason jar or glass bottle.
Ta-da! You just made homemade elderberry syrup! Store in the fridge and take daily for its immune boosting properties.
More of a Visual Person?
Here is my one-minute tutorial video:
How long does elderberry syrup last in the fridge?
The short answer is that it really depends. I’ve found that placing the finished syrup in a mason canning jar while it is still warm creates an air-tight seal and allows it to last much longer in the fridge, up to several months. As a general rule, it lasts about two weeks in the fridge and I typically freeze whatever I won’t use during that time. You can also freeze small amounts in an ice-cube tray and defrost small amounts when needed.
How much to take?
This is really a question for an herbalist or naturopath, but I personally take 1 teaspoon a day as an adult and give half of this to my kids. During illness, I double this amount.
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