There is no real cure for the flu as it is a virus, but there are definitely measures you can take for prevention. This is in no way meant to be medical advice. You need to consult your physician with any concerns for your health. This is just my personal opinion and what I do to help myself and family stave off flu like viruses.
** Edit-In light of the spread of the coronavirus, I am again upping my intake of elderberry syrup.
It's been widely reported that Elderberry is a very effective cold and flu remedy. I don’t remember where I found my original elderberry syrup recipe, but you’ll be amazed at the taste and simplicity. (See recipe below.) Elderberry (Sambucus nigra) is a popular healing plant and was used by Native American healers. Elderberry is high in vitamins A and C. and they have an anti-inflammatory effect on the respiratory system. When made into a syrup, they can help break up mucous secretions as well as calm a chest cold and cough. According to the Natural Physicians Healing Therapies, elderberries contain flavonoids known as anthocyanins that have potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects. These substances appear to inhibit influenza replication and boost immune system activity.
Elderberry syrup is easy to make, tastes delicious and is full of vitamins and trace minerals to help build your immune system. You can purchase elderberry syrup at most drugstores or get this one on Amazon.
However, it’s so easy to make!
What I like about making my own, besides the delicious taste, is knowing exactly what ingredients I have put in the syrup.
Elderberry Syrup Ingredients
* 2/3 cup dried elderberries
* 3½ cups water
* 2 TBSP fresh or dried ginger root
* ½ tsp cloves or clove powder
* 1 cup raw honey (local is best)
Pour water into medium saucepan and add elderberries, ginger, cinnamon, and cloves. Bring to a boil and then cover and reduce to a simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour until the liquid has reduced by almost half.
Remove from heat and let cool until it is cool enough to be handled.
Mash the berries carefully using a spoon or other flat utensil.
Pour through a strainer into a glass jar or bowl.
Discard the elderberries and let the liquid cool to lukewarm.
When it is no longer hot, add the honey and stir well.
When the honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a quart sized mason jar or 16 ounce glass bottle of some kind.
*There is concern of honey causing Botulism poisoning in children under 12 months, so please ask your pediatrician before giving your baby honey. Agave nectar can be substituted for honey for those of us with little ones under 12 months.
How to use:
Give ½ teaspoon to 1 teaspoon to kids and 1 to 3 tablespoons to adults once a day at the onset of any cold and flu symptoms. If the flu or a cold does set in, take the normal dose every 2 to 3 hours instead of once a day until symptoms disappear.
Homemade elderberry syrup looks and tastes far better than any drug store brand. You’ll find your family asking for a teaspoon or more a day! You definitely don’t have to be sick to enjoy this healthy syrup. You can pour this over pancakes or waffles, add some to hot tea or even add into your warm oatmeal. This also makes a great homemade gift to give to friends and family.
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