In the US, almost 13 million people contracted the flu between last October and June 2022. Close to 6 million required medical visits and there were 170,000 hospitalizations. Unfortunately, 14,000 succumbed to this seemingly innocuous illness.
However, influenza is far from harmless. With the added threat of COVID, it’s important to do whatever you can to avoid contracting either. This may seem impossible due to the ease of transmission.
But the key lies in boosting your immune system and elderberry can help do this. Its natural potency is one of many elderberry benefits. It’s also used to treat respiratory infections brought on by the cold or flu. Read on to find out more.
What is Elderberry?
As mentioned and reflected in its name, elderberry is a spherical fruit. Its color varies from dark purple to black and one berry can be three to five millimeters in diameter. However, each grows as part of a cluster that can be as large as 10 inches in diameter.
The black elder tree is quite common in North America, Europe, Northern Africa, and Asia. There are many uses for its various parts. However, some of these, including the raw elderberry are poisonous. But, once cooked consumption of the fruit’s skin and pulp is safe.
But the berry isn’t the only useful element of this unique tree. People also use its flowers to make tea and wine. Some even fry them to make fritters.
The fruit’s popularity stems from the numerous antioxidants and vitamins it contains. Taking it is easy as you can find elderberry in various forms. This includes supplements, syrups, and gummies. Whichever you choose, it can be extremely beneficial to your health.
The benefits of elderberry are generally known. But with the onset of the pandemic, the fruit’s attributes prompted further research.
This created a significant link between the elderberry and COVID. The focus of which was mainly on its ability to combat as well as manage the virus. Here’s what it showed:
1. Boosts the Immune System
Elderberry is mainly known for its ability to boost the immune system. Much of this is due to the number of antioxidants it contains.
This includes a rich blend of Vitamins A, B, C, and so much more. All help to strengthen your immune system as it fights against the common cold and flu.
2. Has an Antiviral Effect
Research indicates that elderberry has an antiviral effect specifically against SARS-CoV-2. This is the virus that causes the Coronavirus disease or COVID-19. Although many patients get mild symptoms, others don’t.
Elderberry helps to regulate overreactive immune systems. This is often what causes more severe symptoms in some patients including pneumonia.
3. Reduces Inflammation
Elderberry also seems to be an all-around health booster. Its antioxidants play a key role in lowering other health risks while the flavonoids it contains can reduce inflammation.
COVID causes inflammation within the nasal cavity as well as the part of the brain. Specifically, the part responsible for smell, emotion, and learning. Both can occur long after the detection of the virus and are often symptomatic of long COVID.
What’s even more concerning? COVID also attacks immune cells which can produce an inflammatory response. This can severely affect the body’s organs. It can also lead to respiratory distress.
4. Reduces Symptoms Associated with COVID
Elderberry can’t prevent you from contracting COVID. But it may help reduce its symptoms.
Taking it within 2 days of contracting the virus may reduce certain symptoms. These include nasal congestion and discharge, fever, and headache.
5. Severity of Cold and Flu Symptoms
Various studies examined elderberry’s effectiveness in treating colds and influenza.
Starting to feel the telltale symptoms of the flu? Not to worry.
Use elderberry within the first two days of the onset of symptoms. It can help to reduce their severity.
6. Reduces Duration of Cold and Flu Symptoms
This timing can also help to reduce the duration of symptoms of the cold and flu. This is a result of the antiviral effect of elderberry. In some cases, symptoms eased, up to four days compared to those who didn’t consume a form of the fruit.
7. Can Treat Respiratory Illnesses
Respiratory illnesses can affect the lungs and other parts of the respiratory system. These often include asthma, lung cancer, and pneumonia. The latter became a complication in many severe COVID cases.
Elderberries can help expel mucus from the respiratory system. Taking elderberry within two days of its onset can also reduce the severity and duration of respiratory complications by as much as 50%.
8. Reduces Risk of Chronic Diseases
Elderberry may go beyond fighting the flu, cold, and COVID. The Vitamin C and antioxidants it contains can also help to reduce the risk of chronic diseases. These include heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
It can also help to lower high blood pressure and boost iron levels. This decreases the likelihood of anemia.
9. Improves Exercise Performance
Exercise can help speed up recovery from COVID and other illnesses. This is especially crucial for illnesses affecting the lungs.
Elderberry can help improve your performance while exercising. This may even make it easier to push yourself to exercise as you recover.
10. Protects Your Brain
This is important as COVID can cause inflammation in parts of the brain. The anthocyanins in elderberries not only give it its purple hue. They can also help protect your brain.
Boosting Your Health and Fighting Illness
Like many, you probably took numerous precautions over the last two years. All to prevent yourself from contracting COVID. Maybe you were successful, but if you weren’t chances are, you won’t want to experience it again.
The key lies in boosting your immune system. The list of elderberry benefits above indicates its consumption is a great way of doing this.
You might be wondering what’s the best way to take it. Other than eating the cooked fruit, the syrup is the second most potent form of elderberry.
You won’t have to look far to find it. Bereisheet 129 has it in various sizes. You can even pair it with our Cider Tonic. There’s no need to wait. Purchase yours today!