Immune Boosting Super-Berry
Cold and Flu Season is just around the corner, and now is the prime time for boosting immune systems! This unassuming little berry grew wild in bushes near where I grew up, and one of our Fall traditions was making elderberry "Shrub" - a potent drink made from the juice of these tiny berries mixed with apple cider vinegar and cultured for a few months. The way we prepared it wasn't very tasty at all, and I still sometimes have
nightmares memories about the daily dose we were required to take. :-) Since then, I've learned most people dilute what we were required to take as a concentrate, and it's very tasty that way! Haha - someone should have told my mom that way back when.
Now that I'm a mom myself and have little people who have no qualms about sharing sippy cups and spoons with other children, being proactive in keeping their immune system strong is something I'm passionate about. Homemade elderberry syrup is one of the ways I do that, and my kids love it! Win-win for this mom!
Check out some of the amazing ways elderberries can contribute to your health!
- One of the top antiviral herbs on the planet
- When given within the first 48 hours of the onset of flu symptoms, it's shown to decrease the length and intensity by four days!
- HIGH in antioxidants. More than Goji berries, blueberries, cranberries and blackberries!
- Anthocyanidin rich which are proven immune boosters.
- Decreases duration of colds by an average of two days!
- Helps maintain normal blood sugar
- Natural diuretic. (Cleans out retained fluid.)
- Eases allergies
- Relieves constipation
- Sinus Infection Aid
- May help prevent cancer
There are SO many more benefits I could cover and Dr. Axe does a very good job at summing them up if you are interested in learning more.
I don't have the benefit anymore of living near where these berries grow, but fortunately, the dried berries are very easy to find and so effective in making the syrup that is a wintertime staple supplement for my kids. Here's an easy recipe to get you started.
Homemade Elderberry Syrup
Pour water into medium saucepan and add elderberries and spices. (Do NOT add the honey yet because boiling it will destroy the natural properties!)
Next, bring to a boil and reduce to a simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour until the liquid has reduced by almost half. Remove from heat and let cool enough to be handled. Mash the berries carefully using a spoon or a other flat utensil. Pour through a strainer into a glass jar.
Discard the elderberries and let the liquid cool to lukewarm. When it is no longer hot, add 1 cup of honey and stir well.
Once the honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a pint sized mason jar or 16 ounce glass bottle of some kind.
Standard dose is 1/2-1 tsp. for kids and 1/2-1 Tbsp. for adults. If the flu or cold does strike, take the normal dose every 2-3 hours instead of once a day until symptoms disappear.
Elderberry syrup is an effective way to ward off sickness as the cold and flu season approaches. Plus, it's so easy to make with just a few ingredients. Furthermore, it eases allergies, helps maintain normal blood sugar, and may help prevent cancer. Have you tried this recipe, or something similar? Let us know what you think in the comments section below.