Protection from a Bad Flu Year with Elderberry
So it’s another bad flu year! The flu that’s going around this year, H3N2, is especially dangerous, and has already resulted in thousands of hospitalizations.
You may be wondering how to protect yourself and your family from this potent virus. While traditional therapies such as ginger tea and warming soups are certainly beneficial, one remarkable herb, sambucus nigra, also known as black elderberry, has been shown to both prevent and decrease the severity of the flu. Read on to find out more!
Avoid the Flu in the First Place
In a 2016 study, people taking elderberry were 40% less likely to get sick than people taking a placebo. Why is this? Elderberry increases the activity of the immune system, and in several studies it’s been shown to specifically increase antibodies to the flu virus. That means that even if someone is exposed to a flu germ, elderberry may help their immune system find and destroy the virus before it has a chance to make them sick.
Elderberry Can Reduce the Length of a Flu
Elderberry is Tasty!
This makes it an easy herb to use for kids and teens (or even picky adults). Most kids are happy to take a spoonful, or it can be put in a smoothie or even drizzled on pancakes or waffles in the morning.
Elderberry and Safety
When harvested and prepared correctly, elderberry is considered safe and non-toxic for most individuals. However, not everyone will benefit from taking elderberry, and elderberry that is harvested at the wrong time or prepared the wrong way can be harmful for your health. Because of this, elderberry should be used under the direction of your naturopathic doctor or other health care practitioner, and you should only use products from high quality herbal suppliers such as Gaia Herbs or Maine Medicinals.