What’s the big deal with Elderberry, anyway? Find out what it is, the benefits, where to find it, how to use it, and more!
Are you completely lost when it comes to the latest hype around elderberry?
Don’t worry, I gotchu mama.
I’m going to dive DEEP into all things elderberry today because, I’m just so passionate on the magic that is Elderberry! It’s so fucking powerful, it’s unreal. We use it regularly in our house now and I’m firm in the belief that EVERYONE should!!
Let’s get to it.
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What is elderberry?
First things first… what in the world is elderberry and why is everyone so obsessed about it? Short answer: it’s nature’s cure to illness. It is a plant that contains properties to fight off colds, the flu, and even more intense illnesses.
It’s a plant that has dated back all the way to prehistoric times and been used by ancient egyptians so it’s nothing new… it’s just been getting a lot of attention because it is POWERFUL STUFF!
Now, that I got your attention, let’s talk more about what it does, shall we?
Benefits of elderberry
I could easily sit here and ramble about all the crazy benefits of elderberry because it does A LOTTTTTT of things. In short, however, it naturally boosts your immune system, fights the flu and cold, and has the potential to fight stronger illness.
→ Boosts your immunity naturally
First of all – it naturally will boost your immunity if taken everyday. Our entire family takes it everyday to keep sickness away and it works really well! We are rarely sick despite coming in contact with those who are sick on a frequent basis.
→ Fights flu, colds, and other sickness
Now obviously we will get sick sometimes and this year in particular, we have gotten a cold and even a moderate version of the flu. I was lucky and didn’t catch it, but elderberry really helped us feel better, and quickly. It not only helps prevent illness but it shortens and weakens symptoms, too.
By taking it as much as 4x daily, it has the potential to help with the following:
- Common cold
- Stomach flu
- Sinus infections
- Common cold
→ Potentially fights stronger illnesses
It can do more than help with common everyday sickness, though! It also has the potential to help with more serious illness – including preventing cancer!! Which is crazytown, honestly!! Who would think a PLANT can help prevent something that serious?!
Oh but it does. And even more, too. It helps with other things such as:
- High blood sugars
- Promoting healthy skin
- Improving heart health
- Preventing cancer
If you’re curious to learn even more about the benefits of elderberry, read this article by Dr. Axe about the benefits and uses of Elderberry.
Where to find elderberry
Okay I’ve sold you on all the magic glory of elderberry, right?! Well…. where do you even find it? Luckily with the uprise in popularity, more and more stores are starting to carry the plant. Even Amazon sells bags of dried elderberry now.
That said – try to strive for fresh, local, raw ingredients if you can. It helps with the strength of the elderberry. It’s also worth noting that Elderberry syrup is traditionally made with honey so if you have children under the age of a year old, double check and have it made with maple syrup.
→ make your own
The single best option is to make your own as you will be sources all your own ingredients. There are TONS of options here, too. You can go crazy and include these added ingredients for the best results:
- Cinnamon sticks
- Elecampane root
- Orange peel
- Fenugreek seeds
- Fennel seeds
- Elm bark
- Ginger root
- Rose hips
- Cayenne pepper
- Lemon juice
- Apple cider vinegar
- Honey (or maple syrup)
But there’s also the option of keeping it simple. I recently had some friends help me make this Elderberry Syrup Recipe too – just proceed with caution while making it as it can make you sick if made incorrectly. That’s quite a bit to add and I myself haven’t even tried… but it sure sounds good for the body!
→ buy it locally made
Okay so not all of us has the time or energy to make it ourselves… I get it LOL. I myself haven’t even tried it myself. I mean… I even had a friend help me post a recipe for y’all so I can help you without actually going through all the work 😉
But if you don’t want to do that… many sell it themselves after making it. And local is the best next option. Just be sure to check where the ingredients are sourced and opt for maple syrup over honey if you are buying it for a child under the age of 1. Try to purchase from a certified herbalist, when possible.
Some even sell gummies or other forms outside of syrup.
→ buy it online
As a last resort, you can purchase it online. This is harder to guarantee the effectiveness, ingredients, etc so I would highly research this option first.
My best suggestion based on my research is to either purchase it from a handmade mama and/or certified herbalist (my friends Sarah of Z&C Apothecary and Kaci of Heart & Bloom are both amazing!) or check out a company such as Zarbee’s Naturals.
How to use elderberry
When it comes to how to use elderberry, there are a few ways to do it, but first I want to point out exactly what we do. During off seasons where illness is rare such as summer, we take a normal dose (typically 1/2 teaspoon for kids and 1/2 tablespoon for adults). During winter months when illness SURROUNDS US, we double that.
Now if we do end up sick… we take that double dose up to 4x a day. This gets rid of it really fast.
The manner in which you take that dose can largely vary… the most common is by shots, drinks, and food.
→ Take shots of syrup
We as a family take shots of elderberry. When I’m super sick – I don’t even measure it LOL. I literally take a shot of it multiple times a day until I’m not sick anymore. If you spend any amount of time on my blog, you will quickly realize I am very busy and DO NOT have time to be sick!!
→ Add to your favorite drinks
Another option is to add the dosage to your favorite drink such as apple juice, lemonade, or tea. If your kids don’t care for the taste as it can be a little bitter… this is a great way to mask it. Just try to limit juice consumption as much as possible.
→ Use in various foods
Lastly, you can add it to your favorite foods. A great option would be to make it into a jelly and put it on some toast or something to that nature. You can get creative if you need to, but it’s easiest to just keep it simple.
I’ve also heard of turning it into a powder, capsule, ointment, etc. But I don’t have a lot of experience with that nor do I have the right research.
But there you have it! Everything you need to know about elderberry. I hope this helps you, mama!