Many of us have heard about elderberry syrup for treating various ailments. We might also have made the mistake of thinking that this syrup is only for children, even though it might be useful for people of any age. These small, purplish-black berries make quite beneficial syrup, so we should read up on the subject before trying out the more synthetic treatments for flus, colds, etc.
You might be interested in more natural treatments as a whole, and elderberry syrup seems like a suitable natural alternative for cough medicines and other medication as well. Let’s check out the uses of this option now:
1. Reducing Flu Symptoms
Flu shots are a part of life for most folks in the United States, but they’re not always effective. Some might even choose not to get flu shots, while others may suffer from problematic symptoms despite all precautions. Having elderberry syrup on hand just might be the way to ease your flu symptoms in the winter this year.
According to at least one study comprising of 60 participants, about 15 ml of elderberry syrup was deemed effective in reducing flu symptoms by a significant amount. This study was conducted in the flu season between 1999 to 2000, and there are probably more recent ones available as well.
For instance, there was a study in 2019 that suggested how the elderberry fruit could help to reduce flu and cold symptoms in the upper airways. An Australian study in 2016 reported that the use of elderberry extract before and after a flight chopped the number of sick days in half.
2. Strengthening the Immune System
When we have a robust immune system, our bodies can naturally fight off most diseases and illnesses before they make a proper hold. By taking elderberry syrup, we can hope to increase our cytokine production. Cytokines are a kind of protein that come from certain cells within the immunes system. With more of these, we’d also have a stronger immunity and will be less vulnerable to all kinds of viruses, harmful bacteria, etc.
3. Staving Off Chronic Disease
The high levels of Vitamin C in elderberries is good for flushing toxins out of our body. This natural cleaning reduces the risk of us contracting chronic diseases. Plus, this benefit is also good news for anyone who suffers from high blood pressure or is at risk of getting anemia due to iron deficiencies.
Additionally, there are phytochemicals in elderberries, which are also called flavonoids. These can help in fighting off inflammation reducing the chances of cancer.
The vitamins in these berries team up with the phytochemicals to form a powerful antioxidant army. With this asset, our bodies will be able to fight off damaging free radicals.
4. Neuroprotective Benefits
The colors of a fruit or vegetable are a sign of its benefits, and the elderberry is no different. The dark purple-black color of this fruit signifies that it’s sight in anthocyanins. These are compounds that give protection to the brain, stave off cognitive issues and help to keep our memory sharp.
Many aging folks have the complaint of losing their memory and wits as time goes by. Perhaps a regular dose of elderberry syrup might be able to decrease the severity of this problem. Since it’s a natural option, taking this syrup on a regular basis couldn’t hurt. However, we should ideally consult a doctor about the dosage and frequency of taking elderberry syrup as well as any other natural or synthetic supplements.
5. Improvement in Physical Performance
When we are physically fit, we don’t mind moving about or exercising to maintain our health. One of the main benefits of elderberry syrup is that it helps in improving our exercise performance. This way, we can look forward to getting through our workouts and burning excess calories more easily.
6. Pain Relief
The anthocyanins in elderberries are known for reducing inflammation naturally. This is achieved by limiting tantric oxide production by the immune cells in our bodies. Nitric oxide is a signaling molecule that can trigger inflammation after a disease or injury. When we decrease its production, we might experience a relief in swelling and the pain it causes.
In natural medicinal practices, we can also see that people have been using slaves and tinctures made out of elderberry for many decades. These are topical options, which are useful for treating burns, cuts, bruises, and even dental pain. Certain people even find that their neuropathic pain issues, such as sciatica, also fade away after using elderberry.
The Potential Downsides of Elderberry Syrup
Where there are benefits, there are also certain drawbacks or potential issues with any kind of treatment. Since elderberry syrup is a mostly natural option, it probably won’t do anyone much harm. You might want to check out these risks before making the decision to regularly use elderberry syrup:
- If you’re making elderberry syrup at home, be aware that any raw and/or unripe elderberries have toxic compounds in them. Children and pets are at an especially high risk here, as even the stems and leaves are toxic to some extent. Consuming these might result in hospitalization due to poisoning, so make sure the berries are fully cooked and the debris cleared away as soon as possible.
- Experts also state that elderberry syrup might adversely react and even interfere with any medication that we’re already taking. People who take laxatives, antidiabetic medications and diuretic medication are at a higher risk here.
- Those who are taking immune-dampening drugs like monoclonal antibodies or steroids should not be using elderberry. This might return in reversing the effect of these medications.
If the above uses of elderberry syrup seem good enough, you might be tempted to buy a bottle and try this product right away. However, it’s important to remember that there are also some commercial elderberry syrups available on the market today. Many of these might add a lot of sugar or glucose syrup to make the concoction taste better. It’s recommended that we look for the most natural option with the least amount of sweeteners, or the syrup might contain more harm than benefits. Above all, a balanced diet, portion control, and regular exercise are essential if we want to lead a healthy life.
The benefits of elderberries might not be limited to humans. Find out if they’re a healthy choice for your chickens as well.