Humans have used the medicinal properties of elderberries for thousands of years, and in the Middle-Ages they were considered a Holy Tree due to their healing attributes.
There’s even proof suggesting that elderberries might have been cultivated by prehistoric humans, and elderberry recipes have been found that date back to ancient Egyptian times.
Hippocrates, the “father of medicine,” described this shrub as his “medicine chest.”
Elderberries are rich in minerals such as iron, potassium, phosphorous, and copper, and vitamins like vitamin A, vitamin B, vitamin C, proteins, dietary fiber, so its medicinal qualities are indisputable.
Below are 7 good reasons to have one tablespoon of elderberry syrup each day.
1. Strengthening the immune system
One of the best things about elderberries is that they can bolster your immune system and deter a flu or cold thanks to chemical compounds known as anthocyanins, which have immunostimulant effects.
According to some research, anthocyanins are linked with increasing immune coordination, and have been found to facilitate the production of immune cytokines – essential messengers in the immune system that modulate the immune response which helps the body combat diseases.
2. Sinus infection relief
The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant attributes of elderberry syrup help lessen sinus pain and infection.
According to a 2006 research by Institute of Complementary Medicine’s Department of Internal Medicine at the University Hospital in Zurich, Switzerland which utilized a solution of elderberry flowers to treat bacterial sinusitis, along with a decongestant and an antibiotic, found that participants who took the mixture did a great deal better than those who didn’t.
3. Promoting better circulation and providing heart support
A research conducted by Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University found that elderberry anthocyanins shelter the inner layer of blood vessels from oxidative stress.
The researchers deduced that elderberry “conferred significant protective effect against oxidative insult.” This is important as it helps promote a healthy circulation in the body and lowers the risk of heart diseases.
4. Supporting strong bones
The anti-inflammatory and antioxidant attributes of the elderberry also can help strengthen your bones and facilitate the growth of bone tissue, thus minimizing the risk of osteoarthritis.
Osteoarthritis can lead to fractured bones and is estimated that about 200 million women worldwide suffer from this condition, with millions more at risk of developing it.
5. Managing glucose levels in diabetics
The American Diabetes Association has found that 29 million Americans suffer from diabetes, but thanks to the elderberry, which helps manage glucose levels, there’s a silver lining.
Study has shown that elderflower extracts help regulate glucose metabolism and the secretion of insulin to reduce blood sugar levels.
A study from the School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Ulster, in Coleraine, Northern Ireland released in the Journal of Nutrition in 2004 looked into the insulin-like and insulin-released actions of the elderberry and found that it significantly increased glucose transport, glucose oxidation and glycogenesis without the addition of insulin.
Glycogenesis is crucial to expel redundant sugar from the bloodstream and helps maintain normal blood sugar levels.
6. A natural diuretic
If you are using over-the-counter medication that increase urination, experts recommend using elderberry carefully due to its possible diuretic properties.
But some may found this quite helpful, as a common issue for older adults is retaining too much fluid, and it has been found that elderberries facilitate urination and bowel movement.
7. Cancer prevention
The anthocyanins that elderberries contain have been shown to have a variety of therapeutic, pharmacologic, and anti-carcinogenic qualities, including the ability to combat cancer.
And since elderberries are rich in antioxidants, it helps deter the creation of cancerous cells, therefore slowing down the spreading of the disease.
Making Your Own Elderberry Syrup
This delicious syrup is easy to make and loaded with therapeutic properties.
- 1 cup dried organic elderberries
- 3 ½ cups water
- 1 cup raw honey
- Medium saucepan
- Pint-sized mason jar with lid
Put the elderberries and water into a medium saucepan and bring it to a boil. Cover the pan with a lid and reduce it to a simmer.
Now boil it between 45 minutes to an hour till the liquid drops by half. Remove it from the heat and let it cool down. Now mash the berries with a masher or a spoon and pour the syrup through a strainer in the glass jar.
Once the liquid cools down, add a cup of honey and mix it nicely. Now store it in the refrigerator and consume daily to bolster your immune system.
Adults should take 1/2 to 1 tablespoon while children 1/2 teaspoon to 1 teaspoon. If you have a cold or flu, consume the normal dose ever 2-3 hours until your symptoms are gone.