By Monique Meadows
As the sun spends more time beaming down, kissing your skin, and beckoning the plants to blossom, the will to explore and get outside is more ignited than ever.
The summer is a common time for most of us to affirmatively set aside time in our lives for some holiday…space to unwind, see new sights, and soak up new energy. Typically, holiday involves time traveling in airports and airplanes and we all know the two are a perfect breeding grounds for the common cold and the flu. There is nothing like the flu to ruin a sought after holiday. With that said, perhaps the only thing worse than the flu is the summer flu. Fortunately, scientists in Australia have conducted a study that has reaffirmed ancient wisdom of a medicinal herb know as Elderberry or Sambus nigra.
The ancient knowledge of Elderberry runs so deep that the “father of medicine”, Hippocrates, adoringly referred to the herb as the “medicine chest” of all herbs because of its endless benefits and the usability of all aspects of the plant. Elderberry is the ultimate immune booster and has more flavonoids than blueberries and the ever-mystic goji berries…hello antioxidants! The list of benefits goes on but let the focus remain on the immune-modulating properties.
The Australian study of 2016 in the journal, Nutrients, examined the power of Elderberry supplementation and its ability to reduce cold/flu duration and symptoms. The study was executed as a double-blind placebo trial on 312 economy passengers travelling overseas from Australia. The passengers took Elderberry extract in capsule form or placebo form for 10 days before their travel and for 5 days after their arrival. After careful analysis and review, the study confirmed that elderberry has a small chance at completely preventing a cold but certainly lessens that duration of a cold by 2 days on average and significantly reduces symptom severity.
While the specific effect that Elderberry has on physical health needs to be further investigated (although most scientists agree it is the antioxidants) it is clear that there are beautiful benefits to integrating the herb into your daily ritual or before your next upcoming holiday! You can relish in the benefits of Elderberry in various forms whether it be tea, tinctures, capsules, lozenges, and/or syrups.
Read the full study here: http://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/8/4/182/htm