Published on October 1st, 2020
Oh so very Elderberry
Staying healthy this cold and flu season is more critical than ever.
Teas and syrups made from the elderberry plant have been commonly used to help fight upper respiratory infections for centuries now. There are many different kinds of elderberry plants, but the flowers and berries of Sambucus nigra, commonly known as European elder or black elder, are the varietal most commonly used in traditional herbal medicine. This elder is a tall tree-like shrub, native to Europe, North Africa and Asia, that grows especially well in mountainous areas1.
The berries from the elderberry plant have long been popular for elderberry wine, pies and flavourings. Sambucus nigra even makes an appearance in pop culture – if you’re an Elton John fan, you’ll remember the lyrics from his 1972 hit:
Feeling fine on elderberry wine
Those were the days …
Various parts of the European elder have also long been used in traditional medicine for a variety of uses. Historically, the leaves, bark, flowers, and berries have all been used medicinally, but most of the clinical studies have been conducted on the therapeutic uses and properties of the elderberry itself. Using standardized extracts means ratios, composition and dosage can be carefully tested and controlled2.
Nowadays, elderberry-based supplements such as syrups, gummies, and capsules are used in Herbal Medicine to relieve symptoms of cold and flus.
How does elderberry work?
The dark violet berries grow in clusters and owe their colour to an abundance of anthocyanins; a group of phenolic compounds which includes flavonoids, that are considered to be the active constituents of the fruits3. Research suggests that the bioflavonoids are a key medicinal component in elderberries that play an active role in how elderberry works in the body.
Choosing a quality product.
Nature’s Way Sambucus are used in Herbal Medicine to relieve symptoms of colds and flus such as coughs and sore throats. While many parts of the elderberry plant may offer health benefits, Nature’s Way Sambucus Syrups and Gummies are made from pure elderberries grown in the Graz and Viennese regions of Austria. The berries are grown at an optimal altitude of between 500 and 600 meters in nutrient-rich soil that produces exceptionally high-quality berries, packed with elevated levels of naturally occurring anthocyanin. The berries are 100% hand-picked and inspected for optimal ripeness. And it’s delicious, whether in syrup or gummies – available in both kids, and adult formulations!
This cold and flu season brings unprecedented challenges, with a long tradition of fighting cold and flu symptoms, the humble elderberry plant might be just the herbal natural health product you want in your corner.
1. Porter et al