large family natural health series #2

health by Praisaeng

With the cooler weather coming, that means  long gone are the days of leaving our windows open for fresh air to sweep through.  It also means that we will be indoors more as a family.  When you get a lot of people indoors you share more germs.  With sharing of germs that usually means that a sickness will occur.

Most of the years, we seem to get by with just the normal colds.  About every 3 years it seems we get hit with the flu type sickness.  With a house full of people being sick at the same time it can make for one weary momma.

What is a mom to do to help prevent this type of sickness?  Feed her family a good, healthy, whole foods diet with a minimal amount of processed foods.  Plenty of Vitamin C in their smoothies and if all else fails and you get it, be prepared with some elderberry flu syrup.


Studies have found that elderberry eases flu symptoms like fever, headache, sore throat, fatigue, cough, and body ache. The benefits seem to be greatest when started within 24 to 48 hours after the symptoms begin.

I was able to get some fresh elderberries from a friend who has an herb garden. I sat outdoors with my girls and pulled the berries from the branches.  I saved 1 cup to make my flu syrup and I dried 1 cup to save for my second batch of the season.

IMG_20140925_130323I put them on a parchment paper lined cookie sheet and dried them in my oven on the lowest temperature.  I saved these in a plastic container in the freezer for another time.

For elderberry flu syrup you will need:

  • 1 cup fresh elderberries or 1/2 cup dried
  • 1 inch piece fresh ginger root
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/8 tsp cloves
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon

IMG_20140925_130528Place all ingredients into a small saucepan.

Why ginger root?IMG_20140925_124750Ginger can relieve nausea and vomiting because of its ability to disrupt and expel gas in the intestine.

To prepare your ginger root, use a potato peeler and peel off the outside and cut into chunks.

Mash and simmer all for half an hour.

IMG_20140925_130615When finished simmering, strain into a bowl and add 1 cup of  honey.


Place in a quart sized jar and refrigerate.

Will stay good for  3 months.  Save your dried elderberries to make this for the second half of the winter season.


For flu prevention take 2-3 Tbsp daily.  If flu has already started increase dosage and it will help lessen the effects of the flu.


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