How to Make Elderberry Syrup...Nature's Natural Cold + Flu Defender
Cold and Flu season is upon us!...I know right? How has that come around so quick? Bring back the heatwave already...
Anyone that knows me well, knows that I CAN NOT handle a cold.
I bitch, I moan, and anyone living with me is probably secretly wishing I get struck down with the Black Death just so they can get some peace.
So, whilst I was out in the countryside last week, I spotted some elderberries and decided to pick some to make some Elderberry Syrup to help boost my immune system and make sure Darth Vader is kept at bay...for all of our sakes.
Elderberries are an amazing natural source of Vitamins A, B and C and when made into a syrup can be used as a preventative as well as a natural medicine during cold and flu season.
"Dr. Madeleine Mumcuoglu, of Hadassah-Hebrew University in Israel found that elderberry disarms the enzyme viruses use to penetrate healthy cells in the lining of the nose and throat. Taken before infection, it prevents infection. Taken after infection, it prevents spread of the virus through the respiratory tract. In a clinical trial, 20% of study subjects reported significant improvement within 24 hours, 70% by 48 hours, and 90% claimed complete cure in three days. In contrast, subjects receiving the placebo required 6 days to recover."
This syrup is child friendly (for over 1 years of age only!) and a much healthier alternative to something like Calpol when they start to get the sniffles. There are lots of variations to the syrup recipe but I've included thyme, which is a fantastic natural alleviator of coughs, cinnamon, one of nature's best natural antioxidants and ginger which is hugely anti-inflammatory, helping with any aches and pains that may come along as a symptom of your cold.
The syrup will only keep for 2 weeks in the fridge so freeze anything you may not use in that time.
RECIPE PREP 15 MINS | COOKING TIME 45 MINS - 1 HR
- 2 cups fresh elderberries
- 4 cups filtered water
- 2 inch chunk of fresh ginger
- Few springs of fresh tyme
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 1 cup really good quality honey
- Pick elderberries from stalks and wash thoroughly.
- Add berries and water to a pan and begin to heat.
- Crush ginger and add to pan, along with sprigs of thyme and cinnamon sticks.
- Bring to boil and allow to simmer for 45mins to an hour, until the liquid has reduced by nearly half.
- Strain liquid through a small mesh sieve, using a spoon to squeeze all the liquid from the berries.
- Allow liquid to cool.
- Add good quality honey to liquid and stir well.
- Bottle syrup in a well sterilised jar or bottle and refrigerate.
- Freeze any syrup that won't be consumed within 2 weeks.
Dose: Child: 1 teaspoon a day Adult: 1 tablespoon a day
If a cold does strike, take the normal dose every 2-3 hours instead of once a day until symptoms disappear.
I'm a huge advocate of using natures gifts to boost our immune systems and heal any ailments.
I'd love to hear about your natural ways of avoiding colds and flu so please comment below.