Several studies have confirmed the immune-boosting power of elderberries.
Studies from 2004 and 2009 demonstrated its ability to cut flu duration in half, and in many cases eliminate symptoms within 48 hours. A more recent 2016 study, shows the berry works similar magic on colds.
The 2004 study, published in the Journal of International Medical Research, showed that when elderberry extract is used within 48 hours of the onset of the influenza A or B virus, it shortens the duration of flu symptoms by an average of four days.
Patients received 15 ml of elderberry syrup four times a day for 5 days.
In a 2009 study, published in the Online Journal of Pharmacology, H1N1 and avian flu patients were given four 175-milligram doses of elderberry extract daily.
While a group of patients receiving a placebo showed no improvement or worsening symptoms, those who received the extract “showed significant improvement within 24 hours.”
Fever, headache, muscle ache and nasal congestion were significantly reduced within 24 hours.
“Within 48 hours of treatment, nearly 90% of the elderberry extract treated patients were either symptom free or had only mild symptoms,” the researchers wrote.