Elderberries can help boost your immunity and have a very long history of use as medicine. They have long been considered an excellent berry to restore and improve general health. In fact Hippocrates referred to the elderberry as ‘the medicine chest’ of all herbs due to the huge variety of health benefits it was considered to have at the time. In the world of modern medicine, the elderberry has shown to live up to the history books, with science showing that this little purple glossy berry does indeed show some excellent medicinal properties, particularly for our immune system.

Used increasingly in supplements for their immune boosting properties, specifically for the prevention of colds and flu, elderberry has been shown in research to ‘boost your immunity’ and reduce the severity of colds & flu as well as reduce the duration of the symptoms (on average by about 4 days). Much of the immune boosting effect of elderberry is put down to the high level of flavonoids (specific phytonutrients) in the berry, which have been shown to prevent the entry of viruses into body cells thereby stopping the virus taking hold in the body. This is specifically the case for the flu virus. Elderberries are also a high source of vitamin C, which science consistently shows has an excellent supportive and beneficial effect on our immune systems including playing an important part against prevention of colds and flu. A deficiency in vitamin C reduces our body’s resistance against infection so elderberry is a powerful support to the immune system in more ways than one.

In the UK, elderberries are in season between August and October, and can be found in plentiful supply in the countryside in other countries around the world including many European countries such as Norway, Denmark and Eastern Europe as well as North and Central America. So why not get your foraging basket out and forage these nutrient dense and medicinal berries to make a classic elderberry medicinal syrup to boost your immunity. This delicious elderberry syrup is suitable for the whole family and very beneficial to help boost immunity through the winter months. It also tastes fantastic too!



An evidence-based systematic review of elderberry and elderflower (Sambucus nigra), 2014. Journal of Dietary Supplements
Elderberry for prevention and treatment of viral respiratory illnesses: a systematic review, 2021. BMC Complementary Medicine & Therapies
Elderberry Supplementation reduces cold duration and symptoms in air travelers: A Randomized, double-blind placebo-controlled clinical trial, 2016. Nutrients
Anti-influenza activity of elderberry (sambucus nigra), 2019. Journal of Functional Foods