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Bob

Elderberry, nature's cure for the flu?

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Elderberry, nature's cure for the flu?

Did you know there was an herb which may be better than Tamilflu in the fight against the flu virus (3)? Elderberry (Sambucus nigra) is a natural herb which can be bought any health food store and has the ability to actually block the flu virus from entering and infecting your cells (1). In addition, Elderberry will greatly reduce the length of your Flu illness if you already have the flu (2). I have been very interested in Elderberry after I read a few studies on the topic of Elderberry and the flu virus (even H1N1), and also intrigued by how few people have ever heard of Elderberry and it's ability to treat the flu, and possibly other viruses as well. Before I go over the actual clinical trials and science behind Elderberry, let's step back and cover some of the basics.

The fact that Elderberry is an excellent treatment for the flu is nothing new, but what is new is the method in which it might inhibit the influenza virus from infecting host cells, at least in vitro. In the past it was speculated that Elderberry may boost the immune system, and it was believed that it was this immune system boost which helped fight off the flu virus. Although this sounds wonderful, one problem with boosting the immune system is the possibility of Cytokine Storms.

The Cytokine Storm is one of the ways in which the flu virus can over stimulate a healthy immune system and can kill a perfectly healthy person. What happens is the Cytokines signal immune cells which are the used to fight off whatever is infecting the body. So far so good, and this is what your body is supposed to do, but when your immune system is over stimulated, you may trigger a Cytokine Storm. Simply put, the Cytokine Storm is the over production of immune cells which can wreck havoc on the tissues and organs, especially on the lungs. So what does this have to do with Elderberry?

To get back to the recent study on Elderberry (1), the benefits of Elderberries method of inhibition, the prevention of the virus from entering host cells, and not an immune system boost, should become clear. If indeed Elderberry's method of action is the ability to block the Virus from entering the cells, and not an immune boost, the possibility of a Cytokine Storm seems to be a non-issue!

In this article I have thus far concentrated on Elderberry and influenza, but there is also research which suggests that Elderberry is also effective against other types of viruses and the common cold (5). I wanted to focus on influenza due to the amount of research in this area. Up until this point, I have also avoided using my own personal experiences with Elderberry, but I will give you a brief overview of my own personal experiences.

I, along with my oldest daughter, have been using Elderberry for about a year. We start taking them at the first sign that someone is sick around us or in our family. My wife is breastfeeding so she doesn't use it, and we don't give it to my youngest daughters (6 and 2). Over the last year I, nor has my oldest daughter been sick at all. Of course this can be a coincidence, and there have been other years in the past where I didn't get sick too often. My other two daughters and wife have all had a few colds this year, but nothing severe. Again, I will not give Elderberry all the credit because I have had other years in which I went the entire year without getting sick while the whole family were ill. On the other hand, my oldest daughter has been around a lot of sick kids in school, and has yet to get ill herself. One thing I do know, if anyone gets sick in my house with the Flu, I will be using Elderberry.

I hope you found this article informative. If there is anything that needs to be corrected, please let me know.

1. Elderberry flavonoids bind to and prevent H1N1 infection in vitro. Roschek B Jr, Fink RC, McMichael MD, Li D, Alberte RS.Herbal

Science Group LLC, 1004 Collier Center Way, Suite 200, Naples, FL 34110, USA.

2. J Int Med Res. 2004 Mar-Apr;32(2):132-40. Randomized study of the efficacy and safety of oral elderberry extract in the treatment of influenza A and B virus infections. akay-Rones Z, Thom E, Wollan T, Wadstein J.Department of Virology, Hebrew University-Hadassah Medical School, Jerusalem, Israel.

3. Elderberry Fights Flu Symptoms

4. Phytother Res. 2010 Jan;24(1):1-8. A systematic review on the sambuci fructus effect and efficacy profiles. Vlachojannis JE, Cameron M, Chrubasik S.Department of Orthodontics, Columbia University, 630 W 168th, NYC, NY 10032, USA. jec2142@columbia.edu

5. Altern Med Rev. 2007 Mar;12(1):25-48. Colds and influenza: a review of diagnosis and conventional, botanical, and nutritional considerations. Roxas M, Jurenka J.Thorne Research, PO Box 25, Dover, ID 83825, USA. m.roxas@comcast.net

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Nice post, I havent been sick in a long time but I will have to remember this.

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The Cytokine Storm is one of the ways in which the flu virus can over stimulate a healthy immune system and can kill a perfectly healthy person. What happens is the Cytokines signal immune cells which are the used to fight off whatever is infecting the body. So far so good, and this is what your body is supposed to do, but when your immune system is over stimulated, you may trigger a Cytokine Storm. Simply put, the Cytokine Storm is the over production of immune cells which can wreck havoc on the tissues and organs, especially on the lungs. So what does this have to do with Elderberry?

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The Cytokine Storm is one of the ways in which the flu virus can over stimulate a healthy immune system and can kill a perfectly healthy person. What happens is the Cytokines signal immune cells which are the used to fight off whatever is infecting the body. So far so good, and this is what your body is supposed to do, but when your immune system is over stimulated, you may trigger a Cytokine Storm. Simply put, the Cytokine Storm is the over production of immune cells which can wreck havoc on the tissues and organs, especially on the lungs. So what does this have to do with Elderberry?

Thanks for the feedback Grant. Many people avoid taking Elderberries for the flu because they believe that Elderberries work by boosting the immune system, and as you quote from my post above, a cytokine storm is caused by an overly stimulated immune system. Since Elderberries method of inhibition is the prevention of the virus from entering host cells and not an immune system boost, the possibility of Elderberries triggering a cytokine storm are probably very small. That is what it has to do with Elderberries.

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Bob I think grant is a spammer at least that is how it seems all he did was quote your post and then put a question at the end and I seen the link he put in his post before you edited it out. I hate spammers and will never visit a site that spams forums. :trueconfirmed22:

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I think you're right, and there have now been two members who have done the exact same thing and link back to the same SEO site.

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Thank you Linda, much appreciated.

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Hi,

Very informative post one should remember this information to get rid of flu.

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Elderberry is a great alternative treatment for both prevention and treating the flu IMO.

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Thank you, too bad more people don't realize how beneficial Elderberry is when trying to avoid the flu. I have a family of 6 now, and I have to say, we still have never caught the flu when we start taking Elderberry syrup regularly during flu system. This was first written in 2010! That's 5 years, and my kids all go to public school where the flu goes around every single year.

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