Elderberries have been used since forever. Historical data shows that people in the Middle Ages used elderberry to improve their health and live longer. The berries were also used in ancient Egypt, and Hippocrates used them to treat his patients.
Elderberries grow in Europe and North America, and some species grow well in Australia. They have sharp and sweet flavor, and work well when added to desserts, syrups, jams, cocktails and wine.
The berries are a good source of iron, potassium, phosphorus, copper, vitamin A, B, C, proteins and fiber. Anthocyanin is an antioxidant in elderberries. It gives their dark color and strong antioxidant effect.
The dark berries are often used to make syrup, and we give you 7 reasons to use it:
- Strong immunity
Elderberries help you prevent and treat colds and fly. Anthocyanins improve your immune response, and stimulate the production of immune cytokines. These are key messengers in the immune system. The syrup relieves colds and upper respiratory symptoms.
- Sinus infection relief
A 2006 study conducted at the Institute of Complementary Medicine found that elderberry flowers relieve bacterial sinusitis when used with a decongestant and antibiotic.
- Circulation and heart
A 2000 study conducted at the Jean Mayer Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University found that anthocyanins protect blood vessels from oxidative stress. This is really important as strong blood vessels are important for your circulation and the prevention of stroke and heart disease.
- Strong bones
Elderberries relieve joint pain and soreness. The berries strengthen your bones and lower the risk of developing osteoporosis.
- Glucose levels in diabetics
Elderflower extract stimulates the metabolism of glucose and the secretion of insulin.
Elderberry increases the delivery of glucose, glucose oxidation and glycogenesis without added levels of insulin.
Elderberry is a strong diuretic, and promotes urination and bowel movement.
Anthocyanins prevent and destroy cancer. Antioxidants in elderberries prevent the development of cancer cells and inhibit the growth of existing cancer tissues.
Make your own elderberry syrup
- 1 cup dried organic elderberries
- 3 ½ cup water
- 1 cup raw honey
You will also need a medium-sized saucepan, strainer and pint-sized mason jar (lid on).
Add your elderberries and water to the saucepan and bring the liquid to a boil. Cover, and turn the heat on low. Simmer for 45 minutes until the water has reduced by half.
Turn the heat off, and let your elderberries cool. Mash them and strain.
Let the syrup cool a bit, and add honey. The syrup shouldn’t be too hot as the heat will destroy the enzymes in honey. Stir well and keep your syrup in the fridge.
Take it every day to improve your immune response.
Take half a tablespoon or a tablespoon every day. Kids should take half a teaspoon or a teaspoon. You need a dose of your homemade elderberry syrup every 2-3 hours until your condition improves.