What Is Elderberry?
The elderberry tree is common throughout Europe, the Americas, and Australia. Elder is a resilient tree, found thriving in some of the coldest places on earth as well as the hottest. There are even some species of elder tree growing on remote tropical islands in the pacific ocean.
Elderberry has a rich history of traditional use in Europe and North America. It was used for treating sore throats, lung infections, and as a purgative (no longer used this way).
Today, the most common reason for using elderberry is for its prophylactic effects on viral and bacterial infection, immune-support, and as a cough-suppressant.
The Science Behind Elderberry
1. Immunity & Viral Infection
Elderberries are rich in antiviral compounds. These compounds are found throughout the leaves, bark, stems, and berries. However, the berries are most commonly used today because of their improved flavour and lack of nausea-inducing side effects. The roots and bark are powerful but tend to cause those who use them to feel nauseous.
Elderberries have a diverse chemical makeup, including as flavonol glycosides, phenolic acids, triterpenoids, and lignans. All of these compounds display varying levels of antiviral action — especially towards viruses that have a hard outer shell — such as the influenza virus. One of the main ways elderberry inhibits the flu virus is by interfering with the outer shell of the virus — making it difficult to infect the cells.
When it comes to influenza, elder targets one part of the viral shell in particular — a protein called neuraminidase. This protein is necessary for newly created viruses to leave the cell and infect new cells around it — effectively bringing the infection to a standstill.
However, elderberry only works if it’s used before the virus has taken hold in the body. Using elderberry too late won’t stop or slow the infection, but may still offer secondary benefits towards coughing and inflammation.
We’ve also added vitamin C and zinc — both of which are critically important for supporting the production of lymphocytes and other immune cells. These cells act as the first-responders during an infection. They’re responsible for identifying and eliminating the virus before it’s able to wreak havoc on the body.
Elderberry has a long history of use as a cough suppressant. Part of this is due to the direct antiviral activity of the herb — which reduces the need to cough directly.
Extracts of elderberry also possess other cough-suppressant effects by relaxing the smooth muscles in the airway and abdomen that are responsible for the cough reflex.
Elderberry is also a rich source of antioxidant compounds — including anthocyanins, flavonols, triterpenes, phenolic acids, and various pigments that give the deep purple/red colour of elderberries.
These antioxidants offer a wide range of benefits to the body — such as reducing inflammation, boosting immune function, protecting organs like the heart and lungs, and much more.
Vitamin C is also added to the formula for extra antioxidant benefit.
Is Elderberry the Supplement For Me?
Elderberry is one of the best supplements available for supporting immunity during cold and flu season. This supplement is an excellent product to keep in the medicine cabinet to use at the first sign of infection, or as a daily health supplement to reduce your chances of catching a cold.
Many people take elderberry with them when travelling to places where the chances of contracting infection are high. Some examples include spending time on a plane or cruise ship, visiting people in the hospital, or after coming into contact with a sick person.
Ingredients & Dosage
Amount Per Serving (2 Capsules):
Elderberry Sambucus (from 10:1 Extract) 3000mg. Vitamin C (as Ascorbic Acid) 80mg (100% NRV). Zinc (from Citrate) 10mg.
Ingredients: Brown Rice Flour (Bulking Agent), Elderberry Sambucus (from 10:1 Extract), Vitamin C (as Ascorbic Acid), Zinc (from Citrate), Vegetarian Capsule (Hypromellose).
Take 2 capsules daily with a meal, or as advised by your healthcare professional.