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Posted by on Nov 19, 2010 in DIY, Tea For Health, Tea in Pittsburgh |

Elderberries

Earlier this week I had started to write my weekly post about black tea, but something stopped me from continuing to write it.  I closed my computer and went to bed.  Then yesterday, while surfing for something completely different, a blog post showed up in my search concerning Elderberry Syrup.  I had been thinking of making the syrup after almost finishing a small ten dollar bottle of Sambucol, but hadn’t begun researching it just yet.  I took this as a sign and clicked on the link.  Before me was a really interesting post concerning how to make medicinal Elderberry Syrup.  I was hooked.

Elderberries for Health

I have a lot of issues with viral infections.  I have evidence that the viral nature of my body started when I was very little, however the boost in the form of mono about ten years ago didn’t help my immune system much.  Since then I’ve been on the hunt for medicinals that will help my body fight off the frequent sinus infections and other viral infections I frequently get.  I’ve been to almost every type of homeopath in the Pittsburgh Region and unfortunately, the one who helped most was the most expensive….. and I mean VERY EXPENSIVE.  So I’ve resolved to work this out myself.  If you can’t be a guinea pig for your own research then who will, right?

Make Your Own Elderberry Syrup

As I type this post, I have a pot of Elderberries sitting on my stove simmering.  Elderberries have long been known to be the “medicine chest of the country people”.  Sure they also taste good and can be made into wine, jelly and other food uses, but this little berry was also a staple in the natural medicine cabinets of our ancestors.  Supposedly, the Sambucus Nigra, which is grown in Europe, is a better berry than the varietials grown here in the states.  I have the Sambucus Nigra on hand and so that is what I’m using, however, I am sure most local varieties will work just as well.  I did read somewhere in my research that the “red” berries are poisonous.  Again, if you are using anything but the Sambucus Nigra, please consult a licensed herbologist.

I researched Elderberries about 3 years ago and found that they were anti flu and viral.  I also learned that Eleuthro Root is also good for your immune system because it is an adaptogen.  An adaptogen helps your body deal with stress and in doing so helps to strengthen your immune system.  Given this knowledge, I blended these two items with other herbs that were good for your immune system, but the finished product was GROSS!  I gave up until now.

A Natural Alternative

Elderberry has been shown to fight all types of flu, including H1N1 and the Avian flu.  I’ll leave my discontent with our medical system to another personal blog, however, I will say this….. All this time people are worried, scrambling and in some cases giving themselves these viruses when all they had to do was have the knowledge that drinking syrup from a natural plant, elderberries, could have beat those viruses.  And really are better fighters of the flu because they fight all types, NOT just the strain the government “thinks” will be the next offender.  Our medical system is broken!

In anycase, here is the original post I found and the recipe I am currently following.

I’ve also found these posts to contain some great info as well:

http://bearmedicineherbals.com/another-gratuitous-elderberry-post.html

http://dandelionrevolution.com/blog/?p=106

http://herbalistpath.blogspot.com/2007/09/elderberry-sambucus-local-forgotten.html

For more information on Elderberries themselves and the studies showing their anti viral abilities, here are some helpful sites:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sambucus

http://margaret.healthblogs.org/2009/10/24/elderberry-and-h1n1/

I’m thinking of stocking more of these magic berries this winter.  If you think you’d like to get them and try the recipes above, send an email to danielle@tupelohoneyteas.com and let me know.  I’d be happy to sell you some.  Please do read the cautions on the berries.  As with all medicinals, herbal or not, they can exacerbate issues in some people.

Bee Well.  Drink Tupelo Honey Teas.

The Tea Lady