Sadie with little Henry
Written by Sally Kneidel, PhD, of sallykneidel.com. This post is now on www.basilandspice.com and is a Google News link.
My daughter Sadie, in her 20s, got sick a few days ago with a flu-like illness. We didn't figure out for a couple of days, after talking to a nurse, that her affliction was almost certainly swine flu. Fever of 102 degrees, headache, severe body aches, fatigue, sore throat and cough, slight sniffles. On Monday she was too sick to go to work. One of her housemates came home with some elderberry capsules from a natural-foods store. Sadie (my daughter) took 800 mg capsules, 3 times a day, on Monday and Tuesday. I talked to her on Wednesday and she said she was 100% recovered with no symptoms whatsoever. Maybe the flu had just run its course and she would have felt fine even without the elderberry. But I was curious enough to look it up on the internet, and was astonished at the volume of credible articles I found about black elderberry as a treatment for the flu. My daughter's whole household is taking elderberry now, to avoid getting what Sadie had, including elderberry in syrup form for the baby.
Now, I'm not a health professional, and I am not recommending a particular flu treatment to anyone. Flu can be dangerous. But I am saying these articles on the internet are interesting. Have a look for yourself. A few of them are listed below. You can find many more by googling "elderberry flu" or "elderberry H1N1."
Tamiflu, an antiviral commonly prescribed for flu, is very expensive. It only shortens the duration and may reduce the severity of the flu. It also has common side effects that can include vomiting and headache. Of course, there are flu cases where reducing the severity even a little can be life-saving, so I'm not knocking Tamiflu.
Articles about elderberry and flu:
Paul Fassa. "Elderberry Trumps Tamiflu for Flu Remedy". Natural News.com, May 30, 2009
Cathy Wong. "Flu remedies." About.com: Alternative Medicine. Dec 4, 2007.
Chris Bolwig. "Flu cure found in the elderberry." Ice News - Daily News. Nov 12, 2007.
Elderberry extract prevents H1N1 infection in vitro. The Medical News. September 11,. 2009.
Teresa Koby. Elderberry flavonoids bind to and prevent H1N1 infection in vitro. Herb News, Herb Research Foundation. August 28, 2009.
Nicky Blackburn. "Study shows Israeli elderberry extract effective against avian flu." Israeli21c: Innovative News Service. January 29, 2006.
Key words:: alternative medicine elderberry flu H1N1 herbal medicine herbal remedies swine flu