How Often Can You Take Elderberry Syrup?

To treat cold or flu symptoms, several commercial syrup makers recommend taking 1 tablespoon (15 milliliters) of elderberry syrup four times daily. Elderberry lozenges (175 mg) are recommended to be taken twice a day.

Is it safe to use elderberry syrup on a daily basis?

Elderberry supplements can be taken on a daily basis, even three to four times a day. You should not, however, exceed the prescribed daily dose.

Elderberry is a medicinal plant that is used to treat a variety of ailments. Elderberry supplements are most typically used to treat colds and the flu. Elderberry-based medicines are classified as dietary supplements by the US Food and Drug Administration, therefore they cannot be sold or promoted as a treatment for any medical ailment.

What happens if you consume an excessive amount of elderberry?

An unsettled stomach is one of the drawbacks of eating too much elderberry. Eating too much of this high-fiber fruit can induce stomach pain, upset stomach, and diarrhea, just like eating too much of any other high-fiber fruit.

Is it possible to consume too much elderberry juice?

If you experience hives, difficulty breathing, or swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or neck, get immediate medical attention.

Although not all negative effects are known, when taken as advised for a short length of time, elderberry is regarded to be probably safe.

When uncooked elderberry leaves, stems, or fruit are swallowed, it is possible to become ill. In the leaves and other plant parts, as well as the unripe green fruit, the elderberry plant contains a chemical that creates cyanide. If ingested in large amounts, this might produce nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, as well as more serious adverse effects.

This is not an exhaustive list of potential adverse effects; more may arise. For medical advice on side effects, contact your doctor. You can contact the FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088 to report side effects.

When should you consume elderberry syrup?

With cold and flu season approaching, you’re doing all of the proper precautions: getting your family vaccinated, sending the kids back to the sink to wash their hands with soap, and perhaps stocking up on elderberry syrup? Although the rest of these measures have plenty of scientific proof (go ahead, get your flu vaccine), the elderberry syrup cult is based largely on fringe enthusiasm for a few cherry-picked research. Is elderberry, on the other hand, effective? Are the flu-prevention benefits of elderberries everything they’re cracked up to be? Unfortunately, the answer is no. But, according to science, you shouldn’t give up on elderberry for colds and flu just yet. So, what is the purpose of elderberry syrup? It won’t keep you from becoming sick, but it might come in handy if you do.

The elderberry, which comes from the berries of European black elder trees, has long been used to treat upper respiratory illnesses. It turns out that the benefits of elderberries for colds and flu are backed up by science. For the most part, they’re small studies, but there have been a few high-quality, placebo-controlled human trials the kind that’s necessary for medications but rarely done for supplements. This research suggests that drinking elderberry syrup at the outset of symptoms may help you feel better faster and minimize the intensity of your symptoms. The exception is that it does not recommend consuming a tablespoon of elderberry syrup every day to prevent colds and flu.

Myths of Elderberry Syrup, Debunked

In a 2004 study, researchers enlisted the help of 64 participants who had been suffering from flu-like symptoms for less than 48 hours. The participants were given 15 milliliters of either elderberry syrup or placebo syrup four times a day for the next five days without knowing which one they were given. Those who took elderberry had their symptoms go away four days faster than those who were given a placebo syrup.

People with flu-like symptoms were given lozenges containing 175 mg of elderberry extract four times a day for two days in a second study. Irina Todorov, MD, an integrative physician at the Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Integrative and Lifestyle Medicine, states that after 24 hours, they reported decreased fever, nasal congestion, muscle soreness, and headaches.

Another study published in 2016 found that taking elderberry before an international journey can protect against cold viruses that can cause havoc in the cramped cabins of a plane. They gave 312 international air travelers either 600 to 900 milligrams of elderberry extract capsules or a placebo commencing 10 days before their flight over the course of 20 months. The participants continued to take elderberry (or a placebo) until four or five days after returning home, and they kept track of any cold symptoms they had during or after their vacation. The placebo group, predictably, had a higher rate of illness. They also experienced more severe and prolonged cold symptoms than individuals who took elderberry extract.

Todorov suggests elderberry to her patients when they start to sense a cold or flu coming on, based on these research. She also advises patients to take elderberry before engaging in activities that could expose them to viruses, such as flying internationally. But she says that we shouldn’t take it every day for the rest of our lives because there isn’t enough evidence that it gives long-term protection against colds and flu.

I don’t advocate using it as a preventative measure on a regular basis, adds Todorov. Its usually only worth taking if you have cold or flu symptoms today, and then only until your symptoms improve. She also advises against consuming elderberry if you are pregnant or nursing, or if you are using immunosuppressive medicines.

How Does Elderberry Work?

The particular processes for how elderberry helps people with colds and flu have yet to be discovered in human trials, as with most plants. Laboratory research, on the other hand, provide a few hints. According to certain studies, elderberry can boost the production of particular cytokines, which signal the immune system to ramp up and fight an infection. Elderberries are also high in antioxidants including vitamins A and C, as well as flavonoids, which are plant substances that protect cells from oxidative damage and may help prevent colds and flu.

Elderberry is also antiviral, explains Todorov. It loosens mucus, making coughing easier and prevents pneumonia or bronchitis from developing.

When it comes to elderberry, Todorov recommends Sambucol, a proprietary extract that has been extensively researched. She recommends 15 milliliters of Sambucol syrup four times a day for adults and twice a day for children for up to five days, based on the research. She recommends taking 175 mg of Sambucol four times a day for adults and twice a day for children for up to two days if using a lozenge. If you choose another brand, read the ingredients list and search for the botanical name (Sambucus nigra) as well as the popular term (elderberry) to make sure you’re getting the appropriate elderberry species.

While elderberry syrup isn’t a replacement for a flu vaccination and won’t guarantee a cold-free winter, it can help your family get through the season with fewer sneezes and ill days.

Elderberry Syrup Benefits

  • When you start to feel cold or flu symptoms coming on, black elderberry syrup is the finest thing you can do.
  • Elderberry syrup can help alleviate cold and flu symptoms and shorten the duration of your illness. It’s an effective technique to keep pneumonia from progressing to bronchitis.
  • The benefits of elderberry syrup do not include flu or cold prevention. You’re barking up the wrong tree if you think an elderberry syrup regimen will keep you from getting a cold.
  • If you’re looking for a brand, Sambucol, the most researched extract, is a good place to start.

When is the best time of day to take elderberry syrup?

A. Elderberry syrup can be taken at any time of day, but most people choose to take it before night or first thing in the morning as part of their daily routine. Taking elderberry syrup before bedtime may help to relieve stuffy noses and sinus discomfort. Taking elderberry syrup first thing in the morning may help reduce constipation by acting as a diuretic.

Is elderberry syrup beneficial for the skin?

A. Many users report having healthier and clearer skin after using elderberry syrup on a regular basis. Elderberries are thought to have antibacterial and antifungal qualities, which help to calm the skin and decrease outbreaks. Elderberry syrup may be beneficial to those with oily skin and those who are prone to breakouts.

How much elderberry should I consume on a daily basis?

What is the recommended dosage of elderberry? Elderberry does not have a defined dose. In several research, 1 tablespoon of elderberry syrup extract was taken four times a day to treat flu. Another frequent form of elderberry is a lozenge, which is often combined with zinc and eaten several times daily once a cold has started.

Who should stay away from elderberry?

Children, pregnant women, and nursing moms should avoid elderberry. 11 While there have been no documented adverse events in these groups, there is insufficient data to evaluate whether it is safe in the long run.

Is it true that elderberry helps to enhance your immune system?

Elderberry berries and blooms are high in antioxidants and vitamins, which may help to enhance your immune system. They may be able to reduce inflammation, reduce stress, and protect your heart.

Elderberry is said to help prevent and relieve cold and flu symptoms, according to some specialists.

Is it true that elderberry can aid with sinus infections?

Getting the flu or a nasty cold is a horrible experience. In addition to getting your flu vaccination every year, which is the most effective means of prevention, elderberry is a natural remedy you may keep in your medical cabinet to provide some additional relief.

Despite the fact that elderberry has been around for millennia, it has just recently gained popularity, but why? Let’s take a look at the plant’s history before discussing how it might assist our health.

Elderberry is a plant that grows on the Sambucus nigra tree. It is widely grown in Europe and can also be found in North America. Elderberry, which is low in calories and high in vitamin C, antioxidants, and fiber, was once thought to be a sacred tree capable of restoring and preserving good health and promoting a long life. Elderberries are made up of berries and blossoms. The ripe fruit is tangy and delicious, but it should only be eaten when cooked. It’s vital to remember that eating raw berries is harmful and deadly.

Because of its various benefits, Emma Stafford, APN-C, an integrative medicine nurse practitioner at Hackensack Meridian Health, sings high praises for elderberry.

“Elderberry can help clean sinus infections, is a natural diuretic and laxative, and helps alleviate allergy symptoms,” Stafford said. “It is totally up to personal discretion whether the blooms are used in tea, eaten raw, or cooked. “While the berries are unsafe to consume uncooked,” she continues, “the blooms are totally fine.”

The possibility of reducing the duration of a cold or flu. When elderberries were consumed, symptoms lasted half as long as they normally do, according to a small research.

Elderberries are low in calories, high in vitamin C and dietary fiber, and high in antioxidants that have been shown to help in stress relief.

It has also been shown in studies that it helps cardiovascular health, though more research is needed.

It is suggested that you begin taking elderberry as soon as you notice symptoms. Elderberries come in a variety of forms, including syrup, tea, jam, juice, wine, and pies. Elderberries are most typically consumed in the form of a syrup. Elderberry can be found in the form of a therapeutic syrup in most drug stores.

Stafford suggests 1-3 cups of elderberry tea per day; if you prefer the syrup, check the product specifics for recommended dosage; and eating the blooms, no more than 8 per day.

Elderberries have certain advantages, but they also have some drawbacks. Symptoms such as diarrhea and headaches have been reported by some persons. Stafford also advises avoiding using elderberry for an extended period of time. “Because no long-term studies have been done, Elderberry should not be used for longer than five days.”

Before ingesting elderberry, anyone under the age of 18 and lactating women should consult with their doctor.

It’s vital to remember that elderberries should not be used in place of a flu vaccination. The greatest way to avoid catching the flu is to get a flu vaccine!

Hackensack Meridian Integrative Health & Medicine’s Emma Stafford is a board-certified adult holistic nurse practitioner. More information on Hackensack Meridian Integrative Health & Medicine can be found here.

If you can’t seem to get rid of your cold or virus, Hackensack Meridian Health offers a variety of convenient treatment alternatives, including urgent care, retail locations, and telemedicine. Find out more or locate a location near you.

The information given by HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not be used to replace medical advice. For individual care, always consult your doctor.