Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. This article is not intended to be medical advice. Please consult your doctor or naturopath before trying any home remedy.
Update October 2013: I have a new and improved Elderberry Syrup Recipe here!
Have you heard all the crazy news about the 2013 flu epidemic? I'm about as excited as you are about the prospect of getting the flu. Which is to say: not at all!
This then poses the question to families: What are you going to do to stay healthy?
Whether or not you choose to get a flu shot (we personally choose not to get flu shots), you'll still want to make sure your immune is in tip top shape and equipped with everything it needs to go to battle for you. Elderberry syrup is full of good-for-you stuff like bioflavanoids, antioxidants, vitamin C, beta carotine, calcium (the list goes on!). The bioflavanoids help prevent cold and flu viruses from infecting cells to keep you from getting sick. If you do get sick, people who take elderberry juice during illness report less severe symptoms and a shorter duration of sick time than those who don't.
So how do you get it? If you're short on time or looking for convenience, you can buy ready-made elderberry syrup (like this Organic Elderberry Syrup from Nature's Way). But making your own is really easy and costs a lot less per ounce than buying pre-bottled stuff. Buy the dried elderberries in the bulk bins of your favorite natural foods store or you can even order them from Frontier via Amazon.
The standard dosage is 1/2 to 1 teaspoon for kids daily and 1/2 to 1 tablespoon for adults daily for prevention. If the flu strikes, take the normal dosage every 2 to 3 hours until symptoms disappear.
- 2/3 cup dry elderberries (you can get organic or regular elderberries online if your local store doesn't have them)
- 3 1/2 cups water
- 2 inch piece fresh ginger (The recipe says 2 Tbsp. I calculate 1 inch = 1 Tbsp)
- 1 1/2 Tbsp cinnamon powder
- 1 tsp clove powder
- 1 cup raw honey (local honey is best if available)