Benefits of Elder plant

Benefits of Elder plant

   Elder is a plant with strong therapeutic effects which can be used to treat and prevent a great number of diseases. Many legends formed around elder, one of them stating that Judas hung himself from an elder tree.


Description of Elder plant

   Elder is a tree 4 to 5 meters tall, with its stem and branches covered in a greenish-ashen bark, having a white herbage in its interior. The leaves have cogged margins and the flowers are white with a pleasant smell. The fruits are small, black and shiny, with 3 longish seeds inside. The plant can be found in mountainous areas, and in river valleys where the sun rays don't shine directly. The flowers are harvested when more than two thirds of them have blossomed, the fruits are only harvested on autumn when they are black. The parts used from this plant are its flowers, fruit and bark.

Properties and benefits of Elder

   The flowers contain glycosides, tanins, mucilages, sapins, pectins, essential oil, vitamin C and mineral salts. In the fruits, alkaloids, carotene, tanins, organic acids and vitamins A, B and C can be found. The leaves contain vitamin C and the bark is rich in tanins, resines and valerenic acid. All these compounds give the plant diuretic, diaphoretic, sudorific, emolient, laxative, anti-inflammatory and antiseptic properties.


   Elder is a strong antiviral medicine, from stimulating the healing of degenerative diseases, to preventing cancerous diseases, to controlling benign tumors. For this a 30 day diet is recommended with tincture from elder fruit. This helps activate the immune system.

   Elder also helps destroy intestinal worms. The flowers, fruits and the juice obtained from the fruits can calm neuralgia. Also, it is useful in case of rheumatism, diseases of the respiratory system or sciatica. The bark is recommended for nephritis and edemas. The tea of elder flowers helps detoxify the body, being recommended for treating cold, flues and bronchitis.

   Elder can be used as a natural medicine in obesity because of its laxative properties and its properties of eliminating water from the tissues. It is also used in cases of renal attacks. It eliminates the toxins from the body through urine and also through perspiration, it increases the secretory activity of the sudorific glands and it intervenes directly though dropsy. Elder increases the secretion of the mammary glands for women who breastfeed.

   Elder tea is used for furuncle, abcesses, eczemas, extrications, burns, swellings, and urticaria. As a compress it helps treat conjunctivitis, eyelid eczemas, having a role of reducing inflammations and of liquefying infections.


The infusion of elder flowers is prepared from a tablespoon of flowers added to 250 ml of boiling water. The bowl is kept covered for approximately 5 minutes. It is filtered, sweetened with honey and 3 cups per day are consumed after each main meal.

The elder flower decoct is obtained by boiling 50 g of flowers for a period of 3 minutes. The elder fruit juice is prepared with 20 g of fruit mixed with a tablespoon of honey and it is taken on an empty stomach in the morning as a laxative.

The decoct of elder bark is obtained like this: two handfuls of elder bark are boiled in one liter of water, until the water decreases to half of its initial quantity, it is then filtered and the whole quantity is divided into 3 parts. One is taken before each main meal.

Elder cordial is prepared from the following ingredients: 10-12 big elder flowers, 1 lemon, 1 small bag of lemon salt, 800 g sugar, a knife's tip of yeast, 10 liters of water. All ingredients are mixed in a jar. They are stirred every day two times in the jar, leaving them in the sun for 3-4 days. The mixture is then filtered and placed in bottles. It is served cold from the refrigerator.

Elder wine is obtained from ripe fruits, crushed, boiled in wine for 30 minutes. It is sweetened and consumed in proportion of 2-3 small glasses per day.

Fruit powder is prepared like this: the fruits are dried and crushed finely to be consumed in doses of 3-4 teaspoons per day on an empty stomach, for 3-4 weeks.


   Elder brews are not recommended to be consumed in large doses of over 200 g of fruit. It can create symptoms of intoxication, vomit, throat irritations, stomachal burns, respiratory difficulties or convulsions.