Elderberries are obtained from a flowering plant called Sambucus, usually found in North American and European countries. These berries were a part of folk medicine in ancient times, as it has several medicinal properties. These bluish black berries are loaded with antioxidants and can promote the immune system, lower cholesterol, cure viral and bacterial infections, improve vision, and are useful for treating flu, cold, and cough. The flowers of elderberries can be used for skincare to tone, soften, moisturize, relax, and soothe the skin.
The presence of proteins and bioflavonoids in elderberries makes it an ideal choice to reduce the ability of viruses causing flu and cold to avoid infections. These juicy fruits are rich in nutrients and minerals like dietary fiber, proteins, copper, iron, potassium, phosphorus and Vitamins A, B and C. Plus, the organic compounds act as an anti-inflammatory agent that makes these berries, a great source to stay healthy.
Top 10 Health Benefits and Uses of Elderberry
We have compiled a list of the top health benefits of elderberries to help you stay healthy and stay free from all infections.
1. Improves Digestive Health
Elderberries are a powerful source of dietary fiber that helps it to lower gas formation and alleviates constipation by easing the bowel movement. Adding a cup of elderberry to your meals will give you a dietary fiber of 10 grams. In short, elderberries can improve the health of your gastrointestinal system. Dietary fiber promotes the nutrient intake efficiency of your gut to help you absorb more nutrients from the foods.
2. Protects Against Cardiovascular Issues
The presence of Vitamin B6, Vitamin C, potassium, and fiber helps elderberries enhance your heart’s health. It is rich in fiber and helps in flushing away the toxins for eliminating the excess cholesterol from your body and preserves the good cholesterol necessary for you. It also prevents the risk of developing serious cardiovascular issues like atherosclerosis. These potassium-rich berries also protect your heart by keeping the tensed blood vessels relaxed and improve the health of arteries.
3. Prevents Respiratory Infections – Sore Throat & Cold
A cup of elderberries can contribute up to 87% of Vitamin C to your everyday requirements. Being a natural antioxidant and water-soluble in nature, Vitamin C enables your body to have enough resistance to fight against the agents of infections and gets rid of the free radicals too. Taking elderberry juice every day will help in clearing infections like bronchitis, sore throat, cold, cough, and other infections in your respiratory system.
The syrup of elderberries has active ingredients like anthocyanins, which is a bioflavonoid that acts as a cough syrup and soothes irritation and inflammation. It also performs like a cough expectorant the remove the phlegm in your system, as it can affect your respiratory glands. People suffering from asthma can take the juice of elderberries to get good relief.
4. Boosts Immune System
Elderberries are known as immune system boosters, as it has potent chemical compounds known as anthocyanidins that are rich in immunostimulant effects. The flavonoids present in these berries can bind with the H1N1 influenza virus in humans and with the H5N1 avian influenza virus. It possesses anti-infectious and antibacterial properties that help in warding off flu, cold and influenza when it is rapidly spreading during a specific season. Apart from strengthening the immune system, elderberries also offer protection against autoimmune conditions and alleviate the symptoms of AIDS too.
5. Slow Down Aging Process
The Vitamin C rich elderberries can develop and maintain the essential protein called collagen, which aids in hair growth and skin health. It also has Vitamin A and bioflavonoids that improves the antioxidant activity in your body. Elderberries also prevent the development of crow lines, laugh lines, wrinkles, and help in fading of the age spots to improve the radiance of your skin.
6. Prevents Blood Sugar Spikes
The elderberries and their flowers are widely used in ancient medicines for treating diabetes. The extracts of its flowers can kindle the metabolism and aids in insulin secretion while lowering the blood sugar levels. The extract of black elderberries increases the transport of glucose, oxidation of glucose, and glycogenesis, the process which flushes out the excess blood sugar. The presence of active antioxidant ingredients in elderberries helps in keeping the blood sugar in stable condition in diabetics and prevent the occurrence of diabetes in others.
7. Drains Excess Body Fluids
Elderberries are known to improve the process of urination and promote bowel movements. It has natural diuretic effects which increase the urine production in the body and get rid of the excess fluids that get retained in elderly people. It also helps in losing excess body weight caused by water retention.
8. Fights Against Anemia
You will get 13% of the daily recommended amount of iron for your body from 1 cup of elderberries. It improves the amount of hemoglobin in your blood and promotes the number of red blood cells. Being a powerful source of iron, elderberries aids in the development of fresh red blood cells. Women who have experienced heavy bleeding during periods or in the menopause stage can consume elderberries to cope up with the loss of blood count in the body.
9. Builds Stronger Bones
Elderberries have anti-inflammatory and antioxidant compounds that help in preventing inflammation, soreness, and pains in bone joints. It has high levels of essential minerals, which improves the strength of your bones and aids in the formation of bone tissues. People who consume elderberries every day will be able to prevent the osteoporosis condition while they grow older. It contains potassium, iron, and calcium helps in strengthening the bones, and improves the density of bone minerals.
10. Prevents Cancer
Being the powerhouse of antioxidants, elderberries can do wonders for preventing and inhibiting the spread and growth of cancer cells. Plus, its antioxidants fight against the damage-causing free radicals, which can affect the health of the cells and infects them with cancer. The extracts of elderberries are loaded with anthocyanins, pharmacologic, therapeutic, anti-carcinogenic properties, and chemopreventive properties to reverse, delay, and inhibit the formation of cancerous cells.
We have covered almost all the health benefits that elderberries have to offer for you. Include this wonder fruit in your daily diet in the form of tea, jams, jellies, wine, syrup, juice, infusion, pills, and powder to stay free from severe health conditions.
More About Elderberry
|Elderberries, raw Nutrition Facts & Calories(1 cup 145g)|
|Carbohydrate, by difference||26.68g|
|Fiber, total dietary||10.2g|
|Total lipid (fat)||0.72g|
|Vitamin A, IU||870IU|
|Vitamin A, RAE||44µg|
|Vitamin C, total ascorbic acid||52.2mg|
|Fatty acids, total monounsaturated||0.116g|
|Fatty acids, total polyunsaturated||0.358g|
|Fatty acids, total saturated||0.033g|
A Word Of Caution On Elderberries
- Even though there are several variants of elderberries, only the black variants are fit for consumption, as others have toxic substances.
- Consume elderberries after cooking it and avoid eating it in its raw form, as it contains cyanide like chemical. Consuming uncooked berries can induce vomiting and diarrhea.
- Elderberries are known to trigger allergic reactions. So, stop consumption if you experience a mild allergic reaction and seek medical attention.
- If you are offering elderberries to your kids or elderly, consult your doctor.
- Do not consume elderberries if you are nursing or pregnant.
- If you are suffering from any autoimmune disease like rheumatoid arthritis, then seek medical advice, as it will improve the functions of your immune system.
- If you have undergone an organ transplantation procedure, then avoid consuming elderberries.
What is elderberry good for?
Elderberry is a fruit that is commonly used in traditional medicine. It has been used to treat various conditions, including diarrhea, respiratory infections, colds, and flu. Elderberry is also known to help improve cognitive function and memory.
Apart from all these benefits, elderberry is also a great source of dietary fiber. This fiber helps to keep the stomach satisfied longer and ensures that you are taking in the right amount of nutrients.
It is effective in treating diarrhea and other stomach problems. It also helps to improve respiratory health by fighting infection and improving air quality. It is beneficial for treating colds and flu symptoms, including congestion and headache. It can improve cognitive function and memory by increasing blood flow to the brain and enhancing nerve communication. Elderberry is a natural source of antioxidants, which protect the body against harmful toxins and free radicals.
What are the side effects of elderberries?
Elderberries are a delicious fruit enjoyed by many people around the world. However, it is always essential to speak with a doctor before starting any new dietary supplement or taking medication. Elderberry can also interact with other medicines you are taking, so it is essential to speak with your doctor about your medications and supplements. The side effects are generally mild and short-lived. The most common side effect is diarrhea, usually due to the high level of polyphenols in the berries. Other side effects include nausea, dizziness, and bloating.
Can you take elderberry everyday?
Elderberry is a natural antioxidant and has been used for centuries to help treat various conditions. It is classified as a hypericum (St John’s Wort) species, which means that it has a similar mechanism of action. So, while it is essential to do your research before taking any supplements, the fact is that elderberry is safe and great way to treat a variety of health problems. First, start with a small amount and increase gradually over time if you are not uncomfortable with the taste.
Is elderberry poisonous to humans?
The berries in raw form, bark, and leaves can cause stomach problems. If consumed in large amounts, elderberry can cause vomiting, diarrhea, and dizziness.
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