Frequently Asked Questions

Sambucol is a range of great tasting food supplements founded on the unique qualities of natural Black Elderberries. Black Elderberries contain naturally occurring flavonoids (phytonutrients) which are powerful antioxidants. Sambucol’s Immuno Forte Range also contains Vitamin C and Zinc which are well known for their ability to support the immune system.

Sambucol Original contains natural Black Elderberry, Sambucol Kids range also includes Vitamin C, Sambucol Immune Forte Range also includes Zinc with the addition of honey to Immuno Forte Pastilles and Sambucol Extra Defence also includes extra minerals (see individual product pages for full specs).

Sambucol Black Elderberries provide a natural mode of action that works via 3 simultaneous ways. The key active ingredients in Sambucol are natural Black Elderberries, Vitamin C and Zinc. Studies have shown that Black Elderberries are unusually rich in the phytochemicals known as flavonoids and among all fruits, elderberries are one of the most concentrated sources of anthocyanins, a class of flavonoids that act as powerful antioxidants to maintain the immune system and protect the body’s cells from harm (and they are responsible for the purple pigmentation of Black Elderberries!). Research has shown that the anthocyanins in Black Elderberry can boost the production of cytokines*, the proteins that act as messengers within the immune system, and thereby serve to enhance the body’s immune response.

Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin, which means it cannot be stored in the body and we must take it from dietary sources. It is an antioxidant, which can help to neutralise free radicals in the body and contributes to the protection if cells against oxidative stress. Vitamin C also contributes to the normal function of the immune system, natural energy-yielding metabolism and the reduction of tiredness and fatigue.

Zinc is a mineral that’s important to the body in many ways including contributing to the maintenance of the normal function of the immune system. It also contributes to the protection of cells in the body from oxidative stress.

* Porter, R. S., and Bode, R. F. ( 2017) A Review of the Antiviral Properties of Black Elder (Sambucus nigra L.) Products. Phytother. Res., 31: 533– 554. doi: 10.1002/ptr.5782.

Elderberry refers to several varieties of the Sambucus tree, which has clusters of white flowers and black or blue-black berries that are packed with phytonutrients. The most common variety is Sambucus nigra, also known as European elderberry or Black Elderberry.

Details of the uses of Elderberry have been recorded since ancient times, as far back as the writings from the Greek Physician Hippocrates (460-370 BC), known as ‘The father of Medicine’, who even referred to elderberry as “nature’s medicine chest.” The berries have long been used for making preserves, wines, winter cordials and for adding flavour and colour to other wines. These uses are based on the Elderberry’s antioxidant properties. More recently, Elderberry has been used as dietary supplements and used in natural health products containing extracts of the berries.

The work of a leading scientist brought the health-giving properties of the black elderberry to the modern pharmacy and health food store channels. Sambucol is the product of over 20 years of scientific research, and the original Black Elderberry formulation used in published scientific journals. Thus, making it the most extensively researched Black Elderberry product in the world.

Not all Black Elderberry extracts are the same. Sambucol is the original Black Elderberry extract, introduced more than 20 years ago by a leading virologist. Sambucol uses the same proprietary, naturally balanced elderberry juice formulation used in the published scientific studies. This distinct method of manufacturing preserves and maximises the naturally occurring health benefits of the berries to guarantee consistent, immune supporting properties in every serving.

Sambucol is a food supplement that is consumed orally. Please refer to the individual product directions of use before use. Sambucol is available in a range of formats including liquids, capsules, gummies, pastilles, chewy tablets and effervescent tablet formats.

Sambucol can be taken daily for immune protection and dosage can be increased for additional support. Please refer to the individual product directions of use before use or as directed by your healthcare professional.

Yes, all the Sambucol products are suitable for children, ages vary per product please see individual product packs or refer to the Easy Reference Guide for suitability before use.

Yes, Sambucol has a range of products suitable for adults including the elderly. Please see individual product packs or refer to the Easy Reference Guide for suitability before use. If you are under medical supervision or on medication always consult your healthcare professional before taking Sambucol.

Consult your healthcare professional before taking Sambucol if you are under medical supervision, on medication, pregnant or are breastfeeding.

None of the Sambucol products contain any artificial colours. The products get their colour naturally from the Black Elderberry.

Sambucol Kids liquid, Original liquid and Immuno Forte capsules contain no artificial flavours.

Three of the Sambucol products contain artificial sweeteners. Sambucol Immuno Forte Sugar Free Liquid contains Sorbitol. Sambucol Immuno Forte Effervescent Tablets contain Sucralose & Sorbitol. Sambucol Immuno Forte Pastilles contain Maltitol in addition to the natural sweetener, Stevia.

Sambucol liquids contain preservatives to help stabilise the products and to prevent microbial growth and undesirable taste/ flavour. The following products do not contain preservatives:

  • Immuno Forte Effervescent 
  • Immuno Forte Capsules
  • Immuno Forte Pastilles
  • Immuno Forte Gummies
  • Kids Gummies
  • Kid Teddies

Select Sambucol products are sugar free (only containing natural fruit sugars) these are:

  • Sambucol Sugar Free Liquid
  • Immuno Forte Effervescent Tablets
  • Immuno Forte Capsules

Yes, all Sambucol products are suitable for vegetarians.

The majority of Sambucol products are suitable for vegans with the exception of Sambucol Immuno Forte Pastilles (which contains honey), and Sambucol Extra Defence Liquid (which contains Vitamin D3, derived from sheep’s wool lanolin).

It is recommended to store products from the Sambucol range in a cool and dry place below 25°C.

Consult your healthcare professional before taking Sambucol if you are under medical supervision, on medication, pregnant or are breastfeeding.

No interactions between Black Elderberry and other medications were identified from the published worldwide literature. As with all medical conditions, the patient should check with a healthcare professional before using any other supplements or medications.

Sambucol is widely available in select high street retail stores including Boots, Holland & Barrett, Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury’s, Superdrug, Waitrose and Independent Pharmacies and Health Food stores. Sambucol is also available online from select e-tailors such as Chemist Direct, Ocado, Body Kind, Amazon and direct from our Sambucol.co.uk online shop.