Elderberries have long been used medicinally, especially in Greece, Scandinavia, Portugal, and Morocco. It is one of the most widely used medicinal herbs in the world and has been used in traditional medicine in order to treat a variety of conditions, including sciatica, fever, and rheumatism.
Nowadays, the primary purposes of elderberry supplements are the relief of cold and flu symptoms.
Elderberries contain anti-inflammatory qualities and are high in antioxidants. In order to prevent and cure pain and sickness, they are able to support and strengthen the immune system.
It’s important to keep in mind that dietary supplements may or may not be right for you, however, as they are only loosely regulated by the FDA.
Supplemental effects differ from person to person and are influenced by a range of factors, including kind, dose, frequency of usage, and interactions with other drugs.
Before beginning any supplements, please see your doctor, pharmacist, or other healthcare professional.
With that being said, here are some of the health benefits you can get from introducing elderberries into your diet!
Contains a Lot of Vitamin C
No more than a cup of elderberry contains 52.2 mg of vitamin C, which is well known for preventing many illnesses, supporting immune health and aiding in muscle recovery, among other things.
Dietitian Trista Best shared via Health that “Vitamin C aids in tissue repair and to reverse oxidative damage, both of which improve recovery time and efficiency.”
In addition to that, vitamin C is also able to maintain cellular function and improves the health of your skin.
Supports Heart Health
Antioxidants found in abundance in elderberries have been proven to reduce blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and inflammation.
“Elderberry’s phytonutrients and fiber content helps to lower the amount of cholesterol circulating [in your blood] by binding to [the cholesterol] and expelling it from the body,” Best shared.
Because elderberry lowers the level of uric acid in the blood, it may also help lower blood pressure.
It has been shown that having excessive uric acid levels in your blood reliably predicts the onset of high blood pressure.
Can Lower Stress and Inflammation
Elderberries’ ability to decrease inflammation may help you feel better and feel less stressed.
Another dietician, Kelly Jones, told the same publication that “Polyphenol flavonoids may reduce inflammation in the brain and support gut health, both of which can positively impact mental health.”
Can Boost Immunity
For instance, regularly consuming elderberries can help with a quicker recovery from respiratory illnesses by simply boosting your immune system.
“Elderberry intake may reduce the duration of the common cold, as well as upper respiratory infections and influenza,” Jones noted.
Of course, while it can speed up the healing process, it’s safe to say that it’s unlikely elderberry has the power to prevent illness.
Supports Respiratory Health
Jones stated that “While studies have yet to show a direct connection between elderberry and chronic lung conditions, elderberry does contain quercetin, which is a flavonoid and antioxidant that’s known to support lung function, especially in those who suffer from asthma and chronic obtrusive pulmonary disease (COPD).”
According to research that appeared in Biology, elderberry mixed with other substances may help individuals with COPD feel better.
To make firm conclusions regarding how elderberry treats lung diseases, however, more studies are necessary.
Contains a Lot of Fiber
The fiber in elderberries supports a healthy stomach, simple digestion, and a robust immune system.
By supplying prebiotics, sometimes known as the “good” bacteria in the stomach, elderberries help promote gut health.
Best said that “One serving of elderberry contains approximately 7 grams of fiber, which is a quarter of the recommended daily intake, and since the typical [American] diet is significantly deficient in dietary fiber, elderberry can be a beneficial addition to most health regimens.”
Helps Manage Blood Sugar Levels
For people with diabetes, elderberry may really help them manage their blood sugar in a natural, enjoyable and accessible way.
Best explained that “The phytonutrients and polyphenols in elderberry help the body to process glucose more efficiently, which makes elderberry a useful aid for managing glucose and keeping it in balance.”
Can Soothe a Sore Throat and Get Rid of a Nasty Cough
When taken as an extract, elderberry has been shown to reduce the length and intensity of colds and the flu and even symptoms of respiratory infections.
When individuals took elderberry within 48 hours of experiencing symptoms, the benefits were most noticeable.
Elderberry may be helpful in treating a cough when mixed with other substances.
Gargling with elderberry, sage, lemon juice, honey, and vinegar is advised, according to research that was published in the Journal of Dietary Supplements.
Helps Promote Healthy Skin
According to Best, “Antioxidants reduce oxidative damage in the body, which, if allowed to persist, has negative implications at the cellular level and can result in damaged skin. Elderberry’s antioxidants help to reverse and stop this damage, and thus help to promote healthy and youthful-looking skin.”
So how can you seamlessly introduce elderberry to your diet?
Cooking the berries to produce elderberry syrup, jams or jellies, and other concentrates is a good idea.
Elderberry gummies are also available as dietary supplements if you’re not a fan of cooking.
According to Jones, “Because most research has been conducted on elderberry syrups and concentrates, I recommend using those. Begin intake three to four times per day at the onset of cold or respiratory symptoms to hopefully shorten the duration and reduce the severity of symptoms, which is the recommendation that is most supported by scientific evidence, as well.”
Make sure to first obtain your doctor’s approval if you wish to take elderberry pills every day.
Elderberries are best included in your diet in the winter when the flu season intensifies.
The ideal elderberry dose falls between 5 and 15 milliliters, with considerable flexibility for concentration.
Elderberries can be eaten in moderation as long as they are actually cooked. The berries should never be consumed uncooked.
Overall, taking elderberry supplements may be beneficial for you, particularly during the colder seasons of the year when your chance of getting sick with an infection, a virus, or the flu is at its highest.
Taking elderberry at the first sign of symptoms and continuing to do so until you feel well is the most efficient method to utilize it to treat a cold or upper respiratory infection.
Before beginning any supplement, be sure it doesn’t conflict with any other prescriptions you may be taking by speaking with your healthcare professional.