Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Tuesday Tip: Elderberry For Winter Illness

Try cooking up some elderberries
before subjecting yourself to vaccines
and injections. 
Elderberries are an example of when cold and flu remedies for winter illnesses can be delicious, natural, and really work.

Every year I pick elderberries from the elder tree in our back yard and use them to make a darkly mysterious and utterly delicious syrup. Usually I have lots of berries left-over, so I freeze them in bags for later on in the Winter season.

Elderberry syrup tastes beautiful on yogurt, with pancakes, or mixed into hot water for a steamy drink, but I don't just eat it because it's tasty. Studies have shown that elderberries may provide measurable protection against upper respiratory infections and seasonal viruses.

In 1995 researchers published an article in The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine that showed ingesting elderberry extract reduced the duration of a flu infection by up to 60%. That's important information if you need to recover from a winter illness and get back to your studio or office quickly.

Other clinical studies have since continued to support the use of elderberries, showing they reduce both the severity of symptoms and the duration of illness in many strains of influenza.

Elderberries are also full of vitamins, minerals, and potent antioxidant compounds that may play a role in preventing cancer.

You can buy elderberry extract in stores, health food shops and even pharmacies (I recommend the Nature's Way Sambucus liquid) but if you know where elder trees are growing, try harvesting some of the berries and making syrup or even jam.

James Wong, ethnobotanist and television show presenter for "Grow Your Own Drugs", has a fantastic elderberry jam recipe on his website.

Medicine has never been so delicious! 

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