School’s back in session, fall is around the corner, and we’re all looking for a little more immune support for adults and kids alike these days! Luckily we’ve got a plethora of options: vitamin C, zinc, quercetin, vitamin D…to name a few. The plant world thankfully provides us with many options to help boost our immunity. Elderberry is probably one of the most recognizable names as it has made its way into the lives of many as the fall & winter immune staple. You can easily find many Elderberry options at Peoples–syrup, lozenges, gummies, capsules–but what exactly is it, where does it come from, and how does it help us?
Elder is a tree or shrub native to Europe, with a history of use that dates back thousands of years and is still one of the most popular remedies in European folk medicine. The berries and flowers are most commonly used, and there are many folk recipes for Elderberry wines, medicinal beers, jams, and more!
Elder flowers are commonly used in teas for upper respiratory infections. They are soothing to irritated mucous membranes and act as an expectorant and relaxant. They can also be used when there is a fever present as they are a diaphoretic, which means they help to encourage perspiration and release heat. Rich in quercetin and rutin, they are also useful for inflammation due to allergies.
Elderberries are most famous for their efficacy in shortening the duration of the flu, which many clinical trials have proven. Studies have also shown that the berries have a direct effect on viruses by inhibiting their reproduction. These flavonoid-rich berries can also help decrease oxidative stress, strengthen the eyes, and protect from inflammatory damage. They are an important antioxidant, containing anthocyanin, vitamin C and B-complex vitamins, and so much more. Elderberries are a deep-acting immune tonic that can be taken every day throughout cold and flu season.
We offer a wonderful selection of elderberry syrup at all Peoples locations. Gaia’s Elderberry Syrup is a a highly concentrated form, and I especially love our Texas-made Cassie Green Elderberry syrup with the benefit of added honey. There are also sugar-free syrup options available as well as tinctures, capsules, and gummies. A bonus to Elderberry syrup is that it tastes delicious! No wonder it’s such a popular addition to the medicine cabinet.
Laurène Elliott-Deyris is an Herbalist and Wellness Specialist at Peoples. She received her training at The Wildflower School of Botanical Medicine in Austin and is furthering her clinical studies with the Eclectic School of Herbal Medicine program out of North Carolina.
**This article is not intended to be medical advice. Please consult your healthcare practitioner before use.**
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