Sambucus nigra

Plant family: Caprifoliaceae (Honeysuckle family)

Part used: flower

Taste: bitter

Historical commentary: Elder has been used since ancient times as a diaphoretic, one of the therapies aimed at resolving a wide variety of diseases. Elderberries are used to make a therapeutic juice and a popular wine.


Diuretic: relieves edema and promotes free flow of urine.

Diaphoretic: promotes perspiration; used in the treatment of acute congestive disorders and mild fevers.

Anticattharal: resolves mucus congestion of the respiratory system.

Modern findings: Elder has antibacterial, antiviral, and anti-inflammatory actions.

Dosage: 3-4 grams per dose, this does is repeated several times for diaphoretic therapies (up to 15 grams per day).

Active constituents: Elder flower is rich in flavonoids (up to 3%), triterpenes (about 1%), and both volatile and non-volatile oils.

Cautions: none known.

Künzle Formula: Tea for Colds.