Thursday, December 15, 2016

Food for Thought :Try This Sweet Home Remedy That Fights The Flu

The Remedy Chicks 
By Linda B. White, MD
Sneeze in progress, showing respiratory droplets. CDC Public Health Image library ID 11162, James Gathany

The holidays are a time of warmth and generosity. We share food and exchange gifts, cards, hugs, kisses, and, occasionally, infectious microorganisms. Nothing quite blights a holiday gathering like an outbreak of influenza.

Influenza viruses are highly contagious, spreading easily via respiratory droplets—tiny drops of moisture released into the air when an infected person talks, coughs, and sneezes and inhaled by innocent bystanders.  Symptoms include sore throat, stuffy nose, cough, body aches, headache, fatigue, fever, and chills.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, peak months for influenza are December, January, and February, though cases occur as early as October.  That’s why you should get vaccinated against influenza early in the fall.  Because the viruses change with time, you need a yearly flu shot.

Other preventive strategies include frequent hand washing, staying away from sick people, staying home if you’re sick (no matter how much you wanted to go to that holiday party), and coughing into the crook of your elbow (rather than your hand).

In addition, the  Remedy Chicks recommend you make a batch of elderberry syrup to have on hand should illness strike.  Here’s why: European black elderberries (Sambucus nigra) have immune-enhancing and antiviral activity against influenza and other respiratory viruses. Three small studies have found that special elderberry extracts reduced symptom severity and duration in people with influenza. Two of the studies used a widely available product called Sambucol.

You can make your elderberry syrup.  Though your product won’t be identical to laboratory-made extracts, the creation is easy, gratifying, and delicious. Herb stores and online bulk herb retailers carry dried European black elderberries.  A reasonable substitute is American elderberry (Sambucus nigra, subspecies, canadensis). Verify the species of local varieties before consuming. Use only ripe, black elderberries.  Never eat species bearing red fruit, which are poisonous.

Our recipe also includes cinnamon and ginger, which are warming, immune-enhancing, and antioxidant.  Ginger inhibits some respiratory viruses, though it may not fight influenza viruses. It also counters inflammation, fever, pain, and cough—all of which can accompany the flu.

Elderberry Syrup – from 500 Time-Tested Home Remedies and the Science Behind Them

3     cups water
1     cup dried elderberries
1/8      cup cinnamon chips
1      tablespoon ginger
¾      cup honey

Bring the water to a boil in quart-sized saucepan. Add the herbs. Reduce heat and simmer, covered, for 30-40 minutes until the water level is reduced by half.

Drape a piece of cheesecloth over a large strainer set atop a medium-size mixing bowl. Pour the mixture through the cheesecloth. With clean hands, fold the corners of the cheesecloth and wring out the liquid. Discard the herbs.

Measure the liquid and pour it into a clean saucepan. Add enough honey so that the ratio of herbal tea to honey is 2:1. (If you have 1½ liquid, you’ll add ¾ cups honey.)  Stir on low heat until the honey and tea are well mixed. Voila, you have a syrup!  Add a splash of brandy to preserve.  Jar, cap and refrigerate. After three months, discard unused syrup.

At the first sign of influenza (or after a recent exposure), take 1 tablespoon four times a day.  Give children half that dose. Do not give to infants under the age of 12 months.  (You can also add this syrup to smoothies, fruit salads, and atop French toast.)
Stay well. ----- The Remedy Chicks
The next few months I will bring  you topics on health (men and  ladies) Hope you enjoy  them as much as I  enjoy bringing them to you .

Look for some interesting things next year on men and ladies health

A proud Grand-poppa             G.


  1. Dad ,
    You are a jack of all trades and master of none ... that's what make you so special .
    The Remedy Chicks has a lot of good health advice . I followed this remedy for years , Health food stores have elderberries ... if not they will order them for you and you are right , you can also order them on line .
    I suggest you take a dose once a week beginning in the fall .
    Thanks Dad , you are the best .
    Love you so much
    Your daughter (giggling)

  2. My dear daughter , you always make me feel special , look at the four beautiful grands you gave me . For that I thank you and I love to help.
    I love you to


Come on in , set awhile and have a cup of tea and cookies , as always you are welcome .