Elderberry: Benefits- flu symptoms






There are many reported benefits of elderberries. Not only are they nutritious, but they may also fight cold and flu symptoms, support heart health and fight inflammation and infections, among other benefits.


Elderberries are a low-calorie food packed with antioxidants.
100 grams of fresh berries contain 73 calories, 18.4 grams of carbs and less than 1 gram each of fat and protein.
Plus, they have many nutritional benefits. Elderberries are:
  • High in vitamin C: There are 6–35 mg of vitamin C per 100 grams of fruit, which accounts for up to 60% of the recommended daily intake.
  • High in dietary fiber: Elderberries contain 7 grams of fiber per 100 grams of fresh berries, which is over one-quarter of the recommended daily intake.
  • A good source of phenolic acids: These compounds are powerful antioxidants that can help reduce damage from oxidative stress in the body.
  • A good source of flavonols: Elderberry contains the antioxidant flavonols quercetin, kaempferol and isorhamnetin. The flowers contain up to 10 times more flavonols than the berries.
  • Rich in anthocyanins: These compounds give the fruit its characteristic dark black-purple color and are a strong antioxidant with anti-inflammatory effects.Trusted Sou
The exact nutritional composition of elderberries depends on the variety of plant, ripeness of the berries and environmental and climatic conditions. Therefore, servings can vary in their nutrition.


May Improve Cold and Flu Symptoms

Black elderberry extracts and flower infusions have been shown to reduce the severity and length of influenza.Trusted Source
Commercial preparations of elderberry for the treatment of colds come in various forms, including liquids, capsules, lozenges and gummies.
One study of 60 people with influenza found that those who took 15 ml of elderberry syrup four times per dayshowed symptom improvement in two to four days, while the control group took seven to eight days to improve.Trusted Sourc
Another study of 64 people found that taking 175-mg elderberry extract lozenges for two days resulted in significant improvement in flu symptoms, including fever, headache, muscle aches and nasal congestion, after just 24 hours.
Furthermore, a study of 312 air travelers taking capsules containing 300 mg of elderberry extract three times per day found that those who got sick experienced a shorter duration of illness and less severe symptoms.Trusted Source
Further large-scale studies are required to confirm these results and determine if elderberry may also play a role in preventing influenza Trusted Sourc.
Note that the majority of research has only been performed on commercial products, and there is little information about the safety or efficacy of homemade remedies.

May Be Good for Heart Health

Elderberry may have positive effects on some markers of heart and blood vessel health.
Studies have shown elderberry juice may reduce the level of fat in the blood and decrease cholesterol. In addition, a diet high in flavonoids like anthocyanins has been found to reduce the risk of heart disease.Trusted Sourc
Nonetheless, one study in 34 people given 400 mg of elderberry extract (equivalent to 4 ml of juice) three times a day for two weeks found no significant reduction in cholesterol levels.Trusted Sour
However, another study in mice with high cholesterol found that a diet including black elderberry reduced the amount of cholesterol in the liver and aorta but not the blood .Trusted Sourc
Further studies found that rats fed with foods containing polyphenols extracted from elderberry had reductions in blood pressure and were less susceptible to organ damage caused by high blood pressure.
Furthermore, elderberries may reduce levels of uric acid in the blood. Elevated uric acid is linked to increased blood pressure and negative effects on heart health .Trusted Source
What’s more, elderberry can increase insulin secretion and improve blood sugar levels. Given that type 2 diabetes is a major risk factor for heart and vascular disease, blood sugar control is important in preventing these conditions.Trusted Sourc
A study found that elderberry flowers inhibit the enzyme α-glucosidase, which may help lower blood sugar levels. Also, research on diabetic rats given elderberry showed improved blood sugar control.Trusted Sou
Trusted Sourc
Despite these promising results, a direct reduction in heart attacks or other symptoms of heart disease has not yet been demonstrated, and further studies in humans are needed.


There are many other reported benefits of elderberry, though most of these have limited scientific evidence:
  • Helps fight cancer: Both European and American elder have been found to have some cancer-inhibiting properties in test-tube studies.Trusted Sourc
    Trusted Sour
  • Fights harmful bacteria: Elderberry has been found to inhibit the growth of bacteria like Helicobacter pylori and may improve symptoms of sinusitis and bronchitis.Trusted Sourc
  • May support the immune system: In rats, elderberry polyphenols were found to support immune defense by increasing the number of white blood cells .
  • Could protect against UV radiation: A skin product containing elderberry extract was found to have a sun protection factor (SPF) of 9.88.Trusted Sourc
  • May increase urination: Elderberry flowers were found to increase the frequency of urination and amount of salt excretion in rats.
  • May have some antidepressant properties: One study found mice fed 544 mg of elderberry extract per pound (1,200 mg per kg) had improved performance and mood markers.Trusted Sour
While these results are interesting, further research is needed in humans to determine if the effects are truly significant.
Moreover, it’s important to note that there is no standardized method for measuring the number of bioactive components like anthocyanins in these commercial products.
One study showed that depending on the method used to measure anthocyanins, a supplement could claim to contain 762 mg/L but really only contain 4 mg/L. Therefore, determining the effects of currently available products may be difficult 
Elderberry: Benefits- flu symptoms Elderberry: Benefits- flu symptoms Reviewed by Anson Moore on March 21, 2020 Rating: 5

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