Want to avoid the flu epidemic? Here's how to stay healthy with elderberry
(NaturalNews) A versatile herb, black elderberry (Sambucus nigra) has been known throughout the ages as a potent immune booster -- tackling colds and influenza, heart disease and even cancer. Used for centuries as a folk remedy in North America, Europe, Asia and North Africa, modern science has begun to take notice of the exceptional healing properties of this berry. Jammed packed with organic pigments, flavonoids, vitamins and minerals, elderberry is an excellent addition to any herbal medicine chest.
Time-honored healing fruit
Traditionally, the incredible therapeutic benefits of elderberry have been enjoyed in preserves, wine and medicinal extracts. Only ripe, cooked berries and the flowers are used for preparations since stems, leaves and unripe berries contain poisonous levels of cyanic glucosides. Elderberries are rich in vitamins A and C, calcium, iron and vitamin B6 as well as the flavonoid quercetin.
Elderberries have a long history of use. Evidence of its cultivation has been indicated in ancient Italian and Swiss village sites. Hippocrates held elderberry as a prominent healing plant while Native Americans used it for sciatica, coughs and rheumatism along with ailments and injuries of the skin. Known as "nature's medicine chest," elderberry is a popular hedge plant in England. A hardy shrub, it can be grown in a variety of environments and is pest resistant.
Fighting colds and influenza naturally
Famous for its capacity to prevent and treat upper respiratory infections and fever, elderberry is a top notch medicinal herb. Israeli researcher Dr. Madeleine Mumcuoglu of Hadassah-Hebrew University Medical Center has made it a life mission to study the healing properties of elderberry. She found 20 percent of individuals suffering from the flu had significant relief within 24 hours when elderberry extract was consumed -- sore throat, coughing, fever and muscle aches were reduced. Seventy-three percent felt better after the second day. Within three days, 90 percent were completely cured. Compare this with the usual week or so it takes the average person to recover from the flu without intervention.
Additionally, a British in vitro study found that black elderberry extract was over 99 percent effective in combating avian bird flu (H5N1). And in Panama, elderberry juice was successfully used to treat the 1995 flu epidemic.
Elderberry also enhances the immune system. Scientists at the Bundesforschungsanstalt Research Center for Food in Karlsruhe, Germany found that high levels of anthocyanins in elderberry improve immune function by boosting cytokine production. These proteins act as messengers within the immune system, helping to regulate immune response. For those contending with HIV or a suppressed immune system, this is promising news.
Alleviating cardiovascular disease and cancer
Not only effective for infectious disease, elderberry supports cardiovascular health and mitigates cancer as well. The University of Graz in Austria discovered that elderberry extract diminished the oxidation of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol. Since oxidation of LDL cholesterol contributes to arteriosclerosis, elderberry is powerful medicine against heart disease.
Tumor growth is constrained by elderberry too. It is an exceptional antiangiogenic (hinders the formation of unwanted blood vessels) and antioxidant. Research has shown that elderberry, when combined with other anthocyanin-rich berries, curbs cellular mutations and tumor growth. In clinical studies, the berry extract decreased tumor growth by more than 50 percent.
During this season of compromised immunity and illness, beat the odds by using elderberry to remain healthy and fit. Whether suffering from a simple cold to a more complex flu bug, or serious diseases like cancer and AIDS, elderberry is an excellent ally to have on your side.
Sources for this article include:
Black Elderberry. Retrieved on January 3, 2013 from: http://www.blackelderberry.info/clinical-summary/
"Elderberry extract herb supplement and juice, research articles and studies" Ray Sahelian, MD. Retrieved on January 3, 2012 from: http://www.raysahelian.com/elderberry.html
"Foraging, Growing and Using the Versatile Elderberry" Main Organic Farmer & Gardener. Retrieved on January 3, 2012 from: http://www.mofga.org
"How To Prevent Colds and Flu With Elderberry" Klaus Ferlow, HMH, Gaia Health, November 27, 2010. Retrieved on January 3, 2013 from: http://www.gaia-health.com
Elderberry (Sambucus nigra). Herb Wisdom. Retrieved on January 3, 2012 from: http://www.herbwisdom.com/herb-elderberry.html
Elderberry. University of Maryland Medical Center. Retrieved on January 3, 2012 from: http://www.umm.edu/altmed/articles/...erry-002880.htm
"Elderberry as a Medicinal Plant" D. Charlebois, 2007. Retrieved on January 3, 2012 from: http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/...bois284-292.pdf
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/038659_f...ixz z2HtKvKFDN
Supplements for flu prevention
(NaturalNews) The pharmaceutical industry would have us believe that the only means of preventing the flu is to get a flu shot. This could not be further from the truth. Flu vaccines are dangerous and ineffective. And there are excellent ways for you to boost your immune system and stay healthy.
The most important measure for flu prevention is to take vitamin D3 (adults 5,000 IU, children 2,000 IU, and babies 1,000 IU) throughout the colder months of the year. Vitamin D is essential for healthy immune function. Vitamin K2 will also boost immune function (40+ mcg).
Other supplements can activate the immune system as well. Whey protein powder that contains immunoglobulins and lactoferrin, or a colostrum supplement, will provide an important daily boost to immune function. Colostrum is the first milk that mammals receive during the first few days after birth. Cow's colostrum is available in several forms as a supplement. Powdered colostrum and flavored chewable colostrum are available for babies and small children. Of course, the best preventive for infants and toddlers is mother's breast milk.
Probiotics, especially lactobacillus and bifidobacteria strains, will help to ensure healthy digestion and a robust lining of the small intestine. Since 80 percent of immune cells originate in the small intestine, a healthy digestive tract is essential for adequate immunity. Taking beneficial intestinal bacteria will discourage pathogens and encourage strong immune reactions to viruses and bacteria.
For anyone who is susceptible to viruses, taking an immune-activating formula of medicinal mushrooms and the herb astragalus will result in greater resistance to infections. Certain mushrooms (fungi) have this capability, including reishi, shiitake, cordyceps, and ganoderma. Many nutritional supplement companies make preparations of these mushrooms in capsule or liquid form.
Make sure you get plenty of sleep during the winter. Sleep deprivation will result in impaired immune function. Eat warm nourishing foods like soups and stews in the winter, and plenty of vegetables and fruits that will supply antioxidants.
Finally, flu shots are detrimental to your health. They can cause flu symptoms and several other adverse effects including a syndrome of muscle paralysis. Many reviews of flu vaccines have shown their ineffectiveness, especially in young children and seniors, the population most susceptible to complications from the flu.
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/038655_f...i xzz2HtO9x11A
What's in flu shots? Aluminum, mercury, MSG and formaldehyde
The CDC openly admits that vaccines contain a toxic cocktail and metals and synthetic chemicals that we all know cause neurological damage. Those include aluminum and mercury.
These metals and chemicals also suppress the immune system, and that's the primary purpose of vaccines: To actually cause an epidemic so that more people rush out to buy more vaccines. The whole point is to sell more vaccines, not to improve public health. And the fastest way to sell more vaccines is to make sure the vaccines themselves contain chemicals and metals that make people more vulnerable to infection.
What, you don't believe me? You think Big Pharma is a collection of compassionate, loving angels who care about the people more than they care about profits? Wake up and smell the chemicals. Vaccine manufacturers are, on the record, criminal organizations that are repeatedly found guilty of felony crimes -- everything from price fixing to the bribery of doctors and the commission of marketing fraud.
Drug companies have zero ethics. They kill children to test their vaccines. They conduct medical experiments on prisoners and mental patients. Do you honestly think they wouldn't use vaccines as a way to make people sick and create an infectious disease scare that sells more vaccines?
Real solutions to the flu
If you really want to stay healthy this flu season, the answer is pretty simple. It all starts with the top three nutrients for flu prevention:
1) Vitamin D
2) More vitamin D
3) And yet more vitamin D
If you're not taking at least 5,000 IUs of vitamin D each day during the winter flu season, you're probably vitamin D deficient and that's making you a sitting duck for influenza.
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/038648_f...ixzz2HtQ6O 8jT
Wow this is very helpful. I've been taking Vitamin D 5000 I.u. The past two weeks and now I am going to go tomorrow to get the black elderberry. I'm going to get several bottles of this. I take the strongest vitamin c I can get around here. So far so good :) thank you for posting this. I'm saving this information to show Ruth and Lauria and Dad oh and anyone else who needs it :)
Just to add to the great article... (Thank you NYS)
Lypospheric vitamin C does not cause gastric distress and goes straight to the liver. You can chug it straight or mix it with juice. As a preventative Dr Levy (it's creator) recommends 5 to 6 grams daily (throughout the day).
Make certain your D contains D3.
Magnesium - important for all body functions - also helps ward off flu and colds.
Hydrate! Hugely important. H2O all day long. Not coffee, tea or juice - water.
Alkalize - bacteria and viruses have a hard time taking hold in an alkalized body. Your pH should be around 7.6 - test frequently - and if your pH drops try lemon water, apple cider vinegar in warm water, vegetable soup, or even baking soda (sodium bicarb - but it should be aluminum free) in water to overcome the acidity.
Chicken soup is a great miracle drug!
Decompress - if you stress your body is weaker and does not fight off much of anything. Even minute meditations help. Find a way to loose the stress. :)
Exercise - bundle up and go for a brisk walk. Walking for 20 minutes - 20 to 30 minutes after a meal increases your metabolism.
Sleep - listen to your body not your schedule. If sleep is needed give in to it! Your body knows that it takes the time of sleep to heal. (check out last week's IE Radio on sleep - http://www.shirleymaclaine.com/ieradio/about/latest )
Let's stay healthy :D
Wow!! Great post NYspirit! and Brit too! I have found Sambuca in the health food stores from time to time and indeed it does work! Another remedy I found for cold and/or flu to take the edge off if you've been unfortunate to come down with it, is Umcka another all natural product.
Great post NY and thank you for all of the health posts. Just know that I am reading them and taking note, even if I do not comment all the time.
Brit....You are our health guru! :D
I do take Lypospheric vitamin C from LivOn labs. You can buy it on-line, but their office just happens to be about 10 mins. from my house, so it is convenient for me.
I also started taking the SeaVeg supplement from the guy who was on IE a few weeks ago. I chose the newest version with the vitamin D.
As far as sleep, I am working on that one. I seem to sleep really hard for a few days in a row and still feel sleepy when I get up...or... I can't seem to sleep at all other days and when I get up I am still wide awake. :confused:
Thanks to all for your input!
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