Flu Prevention: Elderberry Syrup!

DIY Elderberry Syrup Recipe | Real Food RN

Even though I work in a hospital, I do not turn to medication to treat or prevent illness in my family. In fact, my children have never even had antibiotics! In my granola mama journey to achieve optimum health for my babies, I have focused more-so on prevention and it seems to have paid off with some very healthy little ones. This flu season has hit…HARD. I see it both at work and out in the community. I decided to take action and keep it out of my home by whipping up some homemade Elderberry Syrup!  

Why is elderberry syrup healthy? Because elderberries….

  • are very high in vitamin A
  • have more vitamin C than oranges
  • are very high in quercitin (an antioxidant)
  • are anti-inflammatory
  • possess antiviral properties that have been shown to treat colds and flu



  • Pour water into medium saucepan and add elderberries, ginger, cinnamon and cloves (do not add honey yet, because the heat will destroy many of its medicinal benefits)
  • Bring to a boil and then cover and reduce to a simmer for about 45 minutes to an hour until the liquid has reduced by almost half.

DIY Elderberry Syrup Recipe | Real Food RN

  • At that point, remove from heat and let cool enough to be handled
  • Pour through a strainer into a glass bowl

DIY Elderberry Syrup Recipe | Real Food RN

DIY Elderberry Syrup Recipe | Real Food RN

  • Discard the elderberries and let the liquid cool to lukewarm
  • When it is no longer hot, add 1 cup of honey and stir well
  • When honey is well mixed into the elderberry mixture, pour the syrup into a pint sized mason jar or 16 ounce glass bottle of some kind (I used an old dressing bottle)
  • Store in the fridge, it will last several months!
  • I also use this syrup to make my Healthy Gummies for Colds, Flu and Sleep. My kids LOVE them!

DIY Elderberry Syrup Recipe | Real Food RN


  • Standard dose is 1/2 tsp to 1 tsp for kids and 1/2 Tbsp to 1 Tbsp for adults
  • If the flu does strike, take the normal dose every 2-3 hours instead of once a day until symptoms disappear
  • Also, it tastes great on pancakes or ice-cream!

DIY Elderberry Syrup Recipe | Real Food RN

Just a few words on the alternative (Tamiflu)…

Back in 2008, the FDA started reviewing reports of abnormal behavior and disturbing brain effects in more than 1,800 children who had taken Tamiflu. The symptoms included convulsions, delirium and delusions. In Japan, five deaths were reported in children under 16 as a result of such neurological or psychiatric problems. Seven adult deaths have also been attributed to Tamiflu, due to its neuropsychiatric effect. According to a 2009 study, more than half of children taking Tamiflu experience side effects such as nausea and nightmares. Other more rare and bizarre side effects have also been reported, such as the case of a 19-year old British girl who developed toxic epidermal necrolysis and blindness after taking Tamiflu last year.” (Mercola.com)

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Homemade Elderberry Syrup | Real Food RN

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