The elderberry extract is most definitely the strongest herbal remedy against influenza and we recommend that everyone stocks up on this medicine during the flu season.
As we all know, the controversial flu shot is everything but effective, but the elderberry extract has proven to be super effective in protecting you against this common ailment. Numerous journals have written about the powers of this herbal remedy and the ones we mention here are mostly reviewing Sambucol, or black elderberry extract.
Pub Med says that Sambucol are natural remedies based on the black elderberry extract with potent antiviral properties which have proven to be especially effective against various strains of the influenza virus. In vitro studies have shown it to be effective against 10 different influenza strains, while a randomized, doubled blind, placebo study, showed it reduced the flu symptoms in 3 days.
According to the Journal of International Medical Research which references a different study, elderberry extract is an effective anti-flu treatment, which has been used in folk medicine for hundreds of years against the common cold, influenza and sinusitis.
An Ancient Universal Remedy
We’re not the first ones to discover elderberry’s potent anti-viral properties, it has been used since ancient times. There are mentions of the elderberry in ancient medicinal texts as a cure-all medicine. Even Hippocrates refers to this herb as his medicine chest, thanks to the variety of uses and he mentions it several times in his writings.
How and Why It Works?
Research into this herbal medicine has revealed that the active compound in elderberry is called Anivirin and is usually found in the black elderberry’s proteins. This active compound has anti-viral properties which help in preventing the spread of the influenza virus. According to one study the active compound found in sambucol jump-start the immune system and increase the production of inflammatory cytokines.
These findings are essential for preventing outbreaks like the Avian flu, which as the CDC reports has a mortality rate of 60% in the reported 600 cases worldwide. Currently the avian flu is not commonly transferred to or between humans but they fear a virus mutation may change this and lead to a deadly pandemic.
Since the avian flu first spread in 1997 a raising concern appeared that the virus influenza A (H5N1) can mutate or adapt into a new virus highly transmissible between humans and lethal to the point of extinction. It’s highly likely that similar mutations led to the influenza pandemics back in 1918, 1968 and 1957. Scientific evidence suggests that the strain of the virus that currently circulates has a more virulent forms compared to the one that circulated back in 1997 and has a higher mortality rate in humans.
A study conducted in 1995 by Zacay-Rones reveals that black elderberry extract is effective against the Avian flu, especially against the strain Panama B.
According to studies sambucol effectively reduces the flu symptoms and the duration period of the illness. The remedy has been tested on Influenza B and A strains. One study noted that the study subjects that were on sambucol and not the placebo took less over the counter drugs for symptom relief.
Thom’s findings were presented at the 2002 Annual Conference on Antiviral Research and the study was published in the Journal of International Medical Research.
This study was conducted on 60 flu patients which exhibited flu symptoms for up to 48 hours. 90% of the subjects had the A strain while 10% were infected with Influenza type B. 30 subjects were on a therapy that involved 15ml of Sambucol for 5 days, four time a day, while the other half took placebo.
The subjects that were on Sambucol experienced significant improvements in just three days and 90% of them had completely been cured within 2-3 days. The group that took Sambucol also didn’t experience any unwanted side-effects like drowsiness which is common in many other flu treatments.
The control group that was on placebo recovered after full 6 days and took more over the counter medicines like nasal sprays and painkillers.
The study proved that even though Sambucol may not prevent flu it will significantly shorten the duration of the illness and lessen its symptoms.
Method of treatment with elderberry extract
According to the study mentioned above, children should take half a teaspoon of the extract 4 times a day, while adults should take 1tbsp. also 4 times a day. It should be noted that the elderberry extract used in all studies is Sambucol, made out of black elderberry extract.
You can take this extract in a variety of ways. It’s pleasant tasting so you can take it right out of the spoon, you can mix it in your tea with honey, or combine it with chill sparkling water over ice and make a refreshing fizzy natural drink. Make sure you keep the bottle in a cool place, like the fridge.
Sambucol has been researched thoroughly and no unwanted side-effects have been reported so far. However, it’s always best to check with your doctor before starting any kind of treatment. The remedy is safe for children over the age of 2 as well as for the seniors. There haven’t been any studies on whether it’s safe to take this herbal remedy during pregnancy or breastfeeding. There are no known contraindications with other drugs or medicines, including hypertension and asthma.
There’s ongoing research into the effectiveness of Sambucol in allergies, inflammatory disorders, cancer and HIV treatments.
Article and image source: http://www.healthy-holistic-living.com