The Basics of Immunity and the Power of Elderberries
Understanding immunity is all about appreciating our body's natural defense force.
Just as a nation’s army defends its borders, our immune system works tirelessly to defend us against invaders.
These invaders, known as pathogens, include bacteria, viruses, and other foreign entities that could cause disease.
The immune system uses a combination of cells, proteins, and tissues to detect and destroy these harmful invaders.
Elderberries, the dark purple fruits of the Sambucus tree, have been used for centuries in traditional medicine to boost the immune system and combat colds, flu, and other respiratory infections.
These tiny berries are loaded with antioxidants, particularly anthocyanins, which have potent anti-inflammatory and immune-boosting properties. Antioxidants help to protect our cells from damage, which is especially beneficial when our body is under attack from pathogens.
We often associate vitamin C with oranges, but elderberries are also a fantastic source. Vitamin C is known to stimulate the production of white blood cells, the body's primary line of defense against infections.
Studies have shown that compounds found in elderberries can directly inhibit the virus's entry and replication in human cells, and can help strengthen a person's immune response to the virus.
Elderberries can be combined with various herbs to enhance their health-boosting properties.
Here's a simple recipe to make elderberry syrup featuring some of these herbs:
(You can buy a discounted bundle of these ingredients here: - while supplies last!)
- 3oz dried elderberries
- 3 cups water
- .5oz ginger (grated fresh or dried)
- .5oz cinnamon or 1 cinnamon stick
- .5oz whole cloves
- 1/2 cup raw honey (adjust to taste) NOTE: you can use maple syrup for a vegan option)
Herbal Infusion: In a saucepan, combine elderberries, water, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Bring the mixture to a boil.
Simmer: Once boiling, reduce the heat, allowing it to simmer for about 45 minutes or until the liquid has reduced by half.
Strain: Remove from heat and let it cool down. Once cool, strain the berries and herbs using a sieve or cheesecloth, squeezing out as much liquid as possible.
Add Honey: Once the liquid is lukewarm, add honey and stir well until it’s fully combined.
Storage: Transfer your elderberry syrup into a glass jar and store it in the refrigerator. It should last up to two months.
Dosage: You can take 1-2 tablespoons daily for immune support or every few hours when feeling sick.
Note: Always consult with a healthcare professional before starting any new health regimen or giving to children. Avoid giving raw honey to children under 1 year due to the risk of botulism.
While elderberries offer fantastic support to our immune system, it's essential to remember that a balanced diet, regular exercise, and good hygiene are the primary foundations of good health.
Incorporating elderberry syrup, especially when combined with the potent herbs from Tangled Roots Herbal, can be a beneficial supplement, especially during cold and flu seasons.