There are many benefits of elderberry plants and people have been using them for years for their antioxidant properties. The juice was even used as a treatment for the flu epidemic that threatened Panama in 1995.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary gives the elderberry description as: “the edible black or red berrylike drupe of any of a genus (Sambucus) of shrubs or trees of the honeysuckle family bearing flat clusters of small white or pink flowers.”
Many parts of the plant are used to help cure many different aliments. The leaves of the elderberry tree are mashed and used in various creams to help alleviate skin disorders such as eczema. They can also be used as a topical anti-inflammatory salve to treat arthritis. The bark is ground up and used to cure stomach ailments such as constipation or used as an aid to prevent water retention.
The berries of the elderberry plant are most often used and referenced when discussing the elderberry benefits. The berries have a deep pigmentation that is important to the antioxidant property of the berry. The natural, organic pigmentation contains many amino acids that are vital to our health. The berries also have high levels of tannins, carotenoids and flavonoids which work as a natural diuretic. The berries have twice the antioxidant properties of that of blueberries and cranberries.
One of the most amazing benefits of elderberry is that they are believed to boost the immune system. People that take elderberry during cold and flu season report less symptoms then people who don’t take it. It is even being researched in reference to people with HIV.
Elderberries are also known to help with various nervous disorders. By improving the physical health of those that take it often helps improve the nervous system of the consumer.
It is important to note that Elderberry should never be consumed raw. It contains both hydrocyanic acid and sambucine alkaloids that can cause severe stomach upset. It is best to incorporate them into your diet by incorporating recipes that contain elderberry.
For more elderberry information and recipes containing elderberry check out the following websites: