With flu season around the corner and signs for “flu shots” in every store, this is a natural alternative that is inexpensive and effective. It can be made easily at home.
If you or your child has ever had a bad case of the flu, you know how miserable it can be. Especially for moms, it is awful to see your children feeling so bad and not be able to fix it. Black elderberries (sambucus nigra) have been shown to prevent flu and speed recovery in those who have the flu.
Elderberries contain high levels of A, B, and C and stimulate the immune system. Several natural elderberry syrups are available at health stores or online, but usually for around $15 or more for 4-8 ounces. This recipe makes 16 ounces for a cost of under ten dollars and kids love the taste!
- 2/3 cup black elderberries
- 3 1/2 cups of water
- 2 Tablespoons fresh or dried ginger root
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cloves or clove powder
- 1 cup raw honey (we get from our farmer’s market)
- Pour water into medium saucepan and add elderberries, ginger, cinnamon and cloves (do not add honey!)
- Bring to a boil and then cover and reduce to a simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour until the liquid has reduced by almost half. At that point, remove from heat and let cool enough to be handled. Pour through a strainer into a glass jar or bowl.
- Discard the elderberries (or compost them!) and let the liquid cool to lukewarm. When it is no longer hot, add 1 cup of honey and stir well.
- When honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a pint sized mason jar or 16 ounce glass bottle of some kind.
- Ta Da! You just made homemade elderberry syrup! Store in the fridge and take daily for its immune boosting properties. Some sources recommend taking only during the week and not on the weekends to boost immunity.
- Standard dose is ½ tsp to 1 tsp for kids and ½ Tbsp to 1 Tbsp for adults. If the flu does strike, take the normal dose every 2-3 hours instead of once a day until symptoms disappear.
Ever taken elderberry? Will you try this recipe? How do you ward off illness?