You’ve heard of the health-boosting benefits of blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, and raspberries. But there’s one unsung hero of the wellness world that you may not know about: elderberries.
In particular, these berries are heralded for an ability to boost immunity, especially when it comes to cold and flu. Although research into their capabilities is ongoing,
One study from the National Health Institute showed a significant reduction in the duration and severity of cold symptoms among people traveling by air.
If you’re looking for a better way to enhance your well-being, and put a stop to sniffles, your secret weapon could be elderberries.
For starters, elderberry, also known as Sambucus nigra, contains vitamins A, B, C, and other important nutrients like potassium, iron, B6, fiber, and beta-carotene.
Elderberries also contain phenolic acids, anthocyanins, and flavonols — powerful antioxidants that can enhance your immune system.
How exactly do elderberries work their magic as an antiviral solution? It’s believed that the berries contain a certain protein that has been shown to inhibit a virus from replicating and penetrating cell walls. If the elderberry is taken before exposure to a viral threat, the virus is prevented from causing infection. If elderberries are taken after infection, the virus may be prevented from spreading, thereby reducing the duration of symptoms.
Fresh elderberries can be hard to find in your grocery store or local farmer’s market. But dried elderberries, as well as tinctures and supplements, are also effective. And all of these options can be found on online markets.
Elderberry syrups are easier to find online and in stores. To administer, you simply take the syrup with a spoon, just like you would any other medicinal syrup. While elderberry syrup typically tastes great straight from the bottle, you can also mix it into hot teas, smoothies, or oatmeal. If you're looking to buy an elderberry syrup, read the labels to make sure your choice is certified organic and has zero added sugar.
For those who want to go the DIY route, pre-made elderberry syrups are easy to make. Most recipes involve heating elderberries with water, honey, cinnamon, cloves, and ginger in a saucepan. There are also instant pot recipes. Most homemade recipes can last in the refrigerator for up to 2 to 3 months, if stored in a glass bottle.
If convenience is most important to you, elderberry supplements are one of the best options. They are easy to take, and are easy to transport, whether you’re on the road or at home. For an extra immune boost when traveling, make sure to take your supplements with you.
Sick and tired of getting sick? This season, if you want to stay far ahead of the cold and flu game, make sure to add elderberries to your immune-boosting arsenal. They could be a great way for you to stay active, feel good, and keep sniffles at bay. If you feel a cold coming on or if you’re just not feeling 100 percent, let elderberries be your new go-to.
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