By Wendell Fowler
Elton John sang about elderberry wine and Harry Potter’s magic wand was fashioned from the elder plant’s branches. Elder is unquestionably a magical plant: a medicine chest.
The granddad of berries, purple and black elderberries are a rich source.of fiber, vitamins C, A, B-complex, calcium, iron, magnesium, selenium and zinc. WebMD states, “Elderberry might affect the immune system. Elderberry seems to have activity against viruses including the flu and might reduce inflammation. Some people take elderberry by mouth for the common cold, “the flu” (influenza) and H1N1 “swine” flu. It is also taken by mouth for HIV/AIDS and boosting the immune system. Elderberry is also taken by mouth for sinus pain, back and leg pain (sciatica), nerve pain (neuralgia) and chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Some people also take elderberry by mouth for hay fever (allergic rhinitis), cancer, as a laxative for constipation, to increase urine flow and to cause sweating. It is also used for heart disease, high cholesterol, headache, toothache and weight loss.” Some people apply elderberry to the inside the mouth for gum inflammation.
Karen Lynn Burr of Materia Medica Herbal Spa in Greenwood harmonizes. “The flowers and fruit of elderberry have been proven to treat influenza type A & B along with other viruses, including respiratory infections,
“Studies reveal elderberry effective in shortening the time of suffering and minimizing flu symptoms. In lab settings elder has activity against such forgotten illnesses as mumps and measles. All parts of the plant, except the flowers and fruit, contain a mildly toxic chemical called sambunigrin,” she said.
We needn’t look outside Gaia, who spent billions of years perfecting her healing craft. (The first Greek god was a goddess known as Gaia, or Mother Earth. From her productive womb all life sprang. Gaia, as Mother Nature is the epitome of planet earth’s ecosystem.) ReligiousTalks.com states, “Through the global consciousness of Mother Gaia, all living things on this planet, from their most primordial instincts, are constantly interacting with their environment to ensure the harmony, balance and continuity of life. Live in balance with Mother Nature and health and healing are yours; violate Her laws and get out of balance and you pay the price in suffering and disease. In this sense, all medicine and healing can be seen as a system of ecology.”
For myself, I’d’ take elderberry tincture or syrup regularly before I’d swallow Tamiflu that’s made so many good souls sicker rather than “weller”.