Which elderberry vitamin is best?
Many people believe that catching a cold or the flu every year is unavoidable. Even the most diligent hand washers sometimes find themselves with seasonal sniffles or a bout of the flu. One way to protect yourself and to possibly shorten your downtime when a cold hits is by taking elderberry vitamins. Elderberry is the antioxidant-rich fruit of the elderberry tree that has long been used to both strengthen the immune system and may shorten the duration of colds and flu.
Life Extension, Black Elderberry + Vitamin C Capsules is one of the best elderberry vitamins commonly used for fighting off the common cold and giving your immune system a preventive boost.
What to know before you buy elderberry vitamins
Form of elderberry vitamins
Elderberry gummies are a popular choice for building immunity, but there are other forms of elderberry vitamins, too. You can choose from capsules, extracts, powders and effervescent tablets. Some of these work better for children, and some are easier to take on the go.
Elderberry alone offers a big boost to the immune system, but it’s a powerhouse when combined with additional ingredients like vitamin C and zinc. Some elderberry vitamins also add echinacea, which some studies have found to reduce the chance of getting a cold by 10-20%.
Check the nutrition label on the package to see exactly what vitamins and minerals are included in your elderberry vitamin.
The serving size of your elderberry vitamins matters. This can dramatically change the price of the elderberry vitamins and might prompt you to look for another form to lower the cost and increase the potential for effectiveness.
While your dose may vary depending on a variety of factors, generally speaking a preventive dose of elderberry is up to 600 milligrams a day. If you choose an elderberry vitamin with just 60 milligrams per serving, that can add up quickly.
What to look for in a quality elderberry vitamin
Lab-tested elderberry vitamins are the best kind to purchase. Third-party lab testing ensures that each vitamin has the amount of elderberry and other active ingredients as stated on the label. If the lab tests aren’t available on the label, look for a link or a way to scan a QR code to go directly to that batch’s analysis.
While the FDA (US Food and Drug Administration) does not guarantee any of the claims made by the manufacturers of supplements, they do offer a certification process that guarantees the way in which supplements are created and packaged. Look for “GMP-certified” on the label of your elderberry vitamins. This means that the vitamins have undergone strict processes and guarantees that what is on the label is in the actual vitamin.
The best elderberry vitamins only include all natural ingredients with no artificial flavors, colors, binders, fillers or preservatives.
For people with allergies, choosing vitamins and supplements can be challenging. The best elderberry vitamins clearly state on the label which potential allergens are present, and which are not.
Most elderberry vitamins should be:
- Gluten free
- Tree nut-free
- Dairy free
If you keep kosher or follow a vegan or halal diet, check that your elderberry vitamins are in line with those dietary requirements, too.
Elderberries on their own are generally very tart. But adding too much sugar is counterproductive for a vitamin. The best elderberry vitamins strike a good balance between tasty and actually good for you. This is especially important to consider when choosing elderberry gummies or elderberry effervescent tablets.
How much you can expect to spend on elderberry vitamins
Prices vary drastically depending on the number of servings and the formulation of your elderberry vitamins. Expect to pay between $8-$30.
Elderberry vitamins FAQ
Why are elderberries beneficial in preventing and treating colds and flu?
A. Elderberries contain flavonoids. These antioxidants occur in other foods like green tea, citrus fruit, and other dark berries. Antioxidants are powerful allies against free radicals in the body oh, but they also have antihistamine properties. Sun research has also discovered that the memory-enhancing properties of elderberries can actually slow or reverse the mental effects of aging.
Finally, some people who regularly take elderberry supplements during cold and flu season report a mood-boosting effect. This can be especially important as cold and flu season comes in the winter when the lack of sunshine can trigger mood disorders such as seasonal affective disorder.
Can you eat elderberries right off the tree?
A. No. Raw elderberries are toxic. Berries must be boiled for a minimum of 15 minutes to eliminate cyanide toxicity.
If you accidentally consume raw elderberries you may experience symptoms of poisoning almost immediately. These can include abdominal cramps, weakness, dizziness, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and numbness in your lips, mouth and throat. Seek immediate medical attention if this occurs.
But rest assured: the FDA recognizes elderberry vitamins in all of their forms as safe, with little if any possibility of even mild side effects. If you are concerned about the interaction of elderberry with any of your medications, or the potential for an allergic reaction, talk to your doctor.
What’s the best elderberry vitamins to buy?
Top elderberry vitamins
What you need to know: These elderberry capsules are great for year-round immune system support.
What you’ll love: These gluten-free elderberry vitamins contain a whopping 720 milligrams of elderberry per serving, plus 200 milligrams of vitamin C for extra immune support per serving.
What you should consider: This is an expensive supplement to add to your daily routine.
Top elderberry vitamins for the money
What you need to know: This is a great option for those who don’t like to take pills or gummies.
What you’ll love: These tablets were developed by a virus expert and contain a blend of ingredients designed to boost the immune system, including vitamin C and zinc. They are a portable way to take supplements.
What you should consider: The sucralose and sorbitol leave an aftertaste that is unpleasant.
Worth checking out
What you need to know: This gummy has nearly 13,000 positive reviews and is one of the most popular elderberry gummies.
What you’ll love: The texture of these gummies is soft and chewy, like candy. It has 125 milligrams of elderberry, plus other immunity-building ingredients. They are vegan, GMP-certified and gluten-free.
What you should consider: Each serving has 3 grams of sugar — a little high for some people.
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Suzannah Kolbeck writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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