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Sunday, January 6, 2019

Simple Elderberry Syrup w Echinacea

This simple elderberry syrup is easy to make and contains few ingredients, only that which are beneficial to aid in keeping your immune system in peak performance. I's a wonderful alternative to store bought syrups that usually contain a high amount of sugar which can actually suppress your immune system as I spoke about here,Why Sugar is Sabatoging Your Health .

1/2 cup dried elderberries
1 Tbsp. dried echinacea
2 cups of water
1 cinnamon stick
1 cup honey (preferably raw & local)

Simmer all of the ingredients except the honey until the liquid is reduced by half. Let liquid cool before adding honey so as not to compromise the beneficial nutrients and enzymes in the raw honey. Strain, add honey, mix well and you have your syrup! I keep mine in the same large mason jar Synda (of withhandswideopen) gave me when she introduced me to this syrup. Be sure to keep in the fridge as this will spoil if left out too long. The consistency will be thin but it will taste delicious. I usually add a Tbsp. to a cup of warm water and drink it as you would a nice cup of hot tea. 

We follow the instructions found in this Mommypotomus Video:

I have modified the recipe found in the video in order to replicate the syrup Synda made for me last time I was sick. I really enjoyed the added benefits of the echinacea and found the herbal flavor quite refreshing. She spoils me :D She also gave me the cinnamon sticks I used in my own syrup along with this recipe.
I am reducing my coffee intake and replacing the second or third cup of coffee with the elderberry tea. I love the taste and I am aiming for a healthy 2019 so this is helping me achieve that goal. 

Benefits of elderberries:
Elderberries contain vitamin a & c, potassium, iron, folate and calcium. 
According to this Double Blind Study, Elderberries reduce the duration of symptoms associated with the flu. They also reduce cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure, improve bowel function and are anti-aging.
Elderberries should not be consumed in their raw form as they can cause nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. 

Benefits of echinacea
When we had the sniffles or any sign of a cold, Gramma would get us some echinacea. 
Studies have proven that echinacea reduces the duration of a cold and can actually prevent you from "catching" a cold according to this article. Fun fact, Native Americans named echinacea "Elk Root" and learned of it's benefits by watching elk consume echinacea when they were wounded or sick. Echinacea can help with the common cold, tonsillitus, streptococcus infection, rheumatism, chronic fatigue syndrome and even attention deficit disorder. 

Benefits of raw, local honey:
Honey contains the antioxidant "pinocembrin" which has  antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer benefits. Raw honey can help soothe a sore throat. Local honey can reduce allergy symptoms when taken over time. When ingesting local honey you are exposed to the allergens in local pollen. It similar to an allergy shot, your body is exposed therefore becomes less sensitive and you may experience fewer allergy symptoms.

We hope you enjoy this simple recipe for elderberry syrup. We have enjoyed adding it to our calming nightly ritual of warm tea with the children. They love the sweet taste and I love knowing they are getting all the benefits mentioned above. Cheers to a healthy new year!

Grace and peace,
Adoring Family

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