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Benefits of Elderberry
21. Plant Description
Elder is a large shrub or small tree that grows up to 30 feet tall in wet or dry soil in a sunny location. Elder is native to Europe, Africa, and parts of Asia, but it has become widespread in the United States. Deciduous leaves grow in opposite pairs and have five to seven leaflets. Flowers are white and flattopped with five primary rays. Berries are green, turning red, then black when ripe.
22. Parts Used
The berries and flowers are used as medicine. Berries must be cooked before they are taken. Raw berries contain a chemical similar to cyanide. If you have an autoimmune disease, such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus, you should ask your doctor before taking elderberry, as it may stimulate the immune system.
23. Colds and Flu
Elderberry may help treat cold and flu symptoms by reducing congestion and possibly making you sweat more. One study suggested that using a standardized elderberry extract, Sambucol, could shorten the duration of flu by about 3 days. Sambucol also contains other herbs plus vitamin C, so no one knows whether elderberry by itself would have the same effect.Another preliminary study found that a lozenge with elderberry extract (ViraBLOC) helped reduce flu symptoms when taken within 24 hours of symptoms starting. In the lab, one study suggested that elderberry could kill the H1N1 virus in test tubes, but researchers don't know whether it would be effective against H1N1 in people.
24. Bacterial Sinusitis
The use of a proprietary product, Sinupret, to treat bacterial sinusitis along with an antibiotic (doxycycline or Vibramycin) and a decongestant. People who took the combination did better compared to those who did not take Sinupret. However, Sinupret contains other herbs along with elderberry, so no one knows whether taking elderberry alone would work as well.
25. Available Forms
Elderberry is available as a liquid, syrup, and tincture, as well as in
The use of herbs is a timehonored approach to strengthening the body and treating disease. Herbs, however, can trigger side effects and interact with other herbs, supplements, or medications. For these reasons, you should should herbs only
27. Possible Interactions
If you are being treated with any of the following medications, you should talk to your health care provider before taking elderberry. Elderberry also contains flavonoids, which have antioxidant properties and may help prevent damage to the bodys cells. However, very few studies have been done in humans, so researchers don't know how effective elder may be.
Diuretics help the body get rid of excess fluid and increase the amount of urine your body makes. Elderberry may also act as a diuretic, so taking it along with a diuretic could make that drug stronger and raise your risk of dehydration. European elder (also called black elder), is the one used most often for medicinal purposes. Avoid dwarf elder (Sambucus ebulus), which can be toxic. Use a trusted preparation of elder because raw or unripe fruit as well as the leaves, seeds, and bark contain a chemical related to cyanide, which is poisonous.
29. Elderberry Juice Constituents
The innumerable health benefits of elderberry juice can be attributed to the various essential nutrients that it contains. It contains large amounts of vitamins like vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin B, amino acids, flavonoids, tannin, rutin and carotenoids. Other nutrients include organic pigments, sugar, viburnic acid, phosphorus, calcium, potassium, and antioxidants known as anthocyanins and quercetin.
30. Help your body fight disease
Elderberries are a rich source of vitamins A and C, which are crucial in helping the body maintain optimal health. Plus, the bioflavonoids in elderberry syrup boost the body's immune system by increasing antioxidant levels and viruses that damage cell walls. A daily dose can assist you in preventing both acute and chronic disease
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