Saturday, January 10, 2015

Homemade Elderberry Syrup, Natural Remedy for Cold and Flu Prevention

I'm dusting off the old blog to share a this recipe for homemade elderberry syrup that I've been making for my family. Back in early September, my son suddenly had a huge lymph node on the back of his head. When we noticed that one, we started to feel around for others, and he had several -- on the back of his head, on his neck and on his collar bone. After a few days of observation with no change, I took him to the doctor. Her advice wasn't reassuring, "I know it's scary. All we can do is wait and watch. Don't obsess, but keep a close eye." Well, I couldn't live with that, so I did some research and discovered that elderberry was great for healing lymphatic inflammation, among with offering tons of other immunity and antioxidant benefits, including flu prevention. I went on a wild goose chase here in the KC area and discovered ONE place downtown that carried dried elderberries. (You can order them online, but I didn't have time for that!) I spent two hours in the car during rush hour, came home and whipped up the magic elixir immediately. I gave him his first dose the night after our doctor's appointment, and his lymph nodes had gone down significant by morning. Within the week, they were gone. Holy Batman, it worked! Since then, all of us have been taking 1 teaspoon a day as a preventative. All four of my kids like it! No complaints about the flavor at all.

Here is the recipe I used,
  • 2/3 cup dried elderberries
  • 3 1/2 cups of water
  • 2 Tbsp fresh or dried ginger root
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 1/2 tsp whole cloves or clove powder
  • 1/4 peeled organic green apple
  • 1 cup local raw honey
Directions -

Combine all ingredients except for honey in a large saucepan. Bring to boil. Cover and reduce to a boil. Simmer for about 45 minutes or until the liquid has reduce by half. Remove from heat and strain in to a bowl. (If you want to, you can press the excess liquids out of the strained ingredients with a potato masher.) Once the mixture has cooled, whisk in the honey. Transfer to a sterilized glass container (mason jar, jam jar, whatever.)

The standard preventive dose is 1/2 - 1 tsp for kids and 1/2 - 1 tablespoon for adults. If you start to feel symptoms of the cold or flu, you can take the standard dose before breakfast, lunch and dinner.