There are a lot of different berries out there. Strawberries, blueberries, raspberries—even avocados are considered as berries! But have you ever heard of elderberries?
They might not be the most delicious-sounding berries in the world. After all, who would even want to eat something with the word “elder” on it? No offense to the elderly.
This is also the reason why it’s hard to find elderberries in groceries. They are simply not as popular as their kin. This doesn’t mean that they are not as nutritious, though!
That’s right. In this article, we are going to talk about the different health benefits and uses of elderberries. We’ve given you one reason to not like elderberries, but we are going to give you nine reasons to love them!
One against nine? Sounds like a sure win to us! Let’s get started.
The Nine Reasons Why You Should Love Elderberries
Here are the different reasons why you should start incorporating elderberries into your diet ASAP.
Reason #1: It is a nutrient-bomb.
Elderberries contain a lot of vitamins and minerals. Here’s a quick list:
· Fiber that can aid in digestion and detoxification (more about this down below).
· Calcium and polyphenols that can help strengthen bones and lower the risk of osteoporosis.
· Vitamin B-9, also known as folate, a component that is need in order for our body to create red and white blood cells.
And so much more!
Don’t worry, we are going to talk about more of them below, but honestly, of all the nutrients that elderberries have, we’re afraid that this article will never be enough to cover all of them.
Reason #2: It helps fight cancer.
Here’s another one. Flavanols. To be more specific, elderberries contain flavanols such as isorhamnetin, kaempferol, and quercetin—nature’s most powerful antioxidants.
Our body generates free radicals every day. An imbalance of free radicals in our blood leads to cellular damage that increases our risk of getting cancer. What we need are antioxidants to counter free radicals and detox them from our body, natural antioxidants that elderberries have.
Reason #3: It can make your more beautiful.
Do you know what the primary cause of any major skin issue is? Too much sun exposure. It can cause premature wrinkles. It can dry up the moisture of our face. Too much UV rays can even lead to skin cancer!
Fortunately for us, elderberries, when used as a skin product, has a decent amount of sun protection factor.
Aside from SPF, elderberries also have antiseptic and anti-inflammatory properties. This means that a face wash made up of elderberries may help cure acne and other skin imperfections.And lastly, it also has vitamin A which soothes the skin, reduce wrinkles and fine lines, and just make it look younger.
Reason #4: It can make you look sexier…
We have already mentioned above that elderberries have a lot of fiber, and that fiber aids in digestion. But did you know that aside from helping us getting the most from our meals, fiber can also aid in weight loss?In fact, it can even help us suppress appetite by reducing the number of hunger hormones (called ghrelins) produced in our body.
Reason #5: …And feel sexier too!
So, how is your weight loss program doing? While it’s awesome that you have been shedding those extra pounds, looking sexy and feeling sexy are actually two different things.
We know you get us when we say that it doesn’t matter if you have a small waistline. If you’re feeling bloated, you’re not going to feel sexy.If that’s how you feel then what you need is a diuretic. It is a remedy that helps the body get rid of excess waste. And if you want a diuretic, then you will be pleased to learn that you don’t have to look anywhere else because elderberries can serve as a diuretic too.
Reason #6: And of course, elderberries can make you stronger.
Here’s another nutrient we’ve mentioned above: Calcium. It helps reduce the risk of osteoporosis. But not only that, having stronger bones means more power to exercise and continue that sexy and winning streak of yours.
Wow, who’d have thought that consuming berries would turn you into a bombshell?
Reason #7 and 8: Say goodbye to the big two: Diabetes and Heart Disease.
Heart disease and diabetes may be caused by a lot of different factors, but one of the main culprits is not eating healthy. Our body is not built to consume too much fat and sugar, after all. That’s why it’s a good thing that elderberries can lower the amount of both fat and sugar from our blood.
That’s all possible thanks to the enzyme α-glucosidase, polyphenols, flavonoids, and potassium present in elderberries.
According to the latest studies, the flavonoids in elderberries such as anthocyanins have been found to significantly reduce the risk of heart disease. Meanwhile, the polyphenols also found in elderberries had shown to lower blood pressure.
Another component that makes elderberries efficient in keeping heart disease at bay is its potassium content. Potassium is a mineral that helps with the electrical activity of our heart and aid it in lowering high blood pressure.And of course, elderberries have been found to increase insulin secretion probably due to the enzyme α-glucosidase present in it which can improve blood sugar levels.
Reason #9: You will be unstoppable.
Finally, according to the American Botanical Council, elderberries have immunostimulating and anti-inflammatory abilities—both properties linked to easing severe allergic reactions. This means, basically, elderberries will help you with your weaknesses too! Sorry, but that kryptonite won’t work anymore.
Anyway, we have been talking about all this boring health stuff for long enough. It’s time to have some fun! Below are some fun ways to enjoy elderberries.
Awesome Ways to Enjoy Elderberries and Incorporate Them into Your Diet
How about a little fizz for the ladies?
Known as elderflower fizz, this drink is a concoction made from the small, delicate flowers of the elderberry bush. While its appearance already gives it a whimsical charm adding to the fizz of the drink, the folklore behind elderberry has more magic in store.
Apparently, according to pagan tradition, the Elder (the bush where elderberries come from) holds the power and intentions of the Elder Mother. In fact, just falling asleep under this bush that grows as big as a tree can help with lucid dreaming and astral travel to Celtic fae realms.
Here’s a hint: It’s not magic. It’s the elderberry’s science of healing doing its work.
Or how about some jelly?
So you’ve just had a night out with some friends drinking champagne—sounds like a sweet night! Well, allow us to sweeten up your mornings as well.
Here’s a quick recipe on how to make elderberry jelly:
1. Crush elderberries and put them on a saucepan.
2. Heat it until the juices of your elderberries start to seep out of it.
3. Simmer it for a while, around fifteen minutes.
4. Add lemon juice and sugar.
5. Make sure everything’s well-blended together.
6. Allow it to boil on high heat.
7. Add your liquid pectin.
8. Remove from heat and skim for a smoother texture.
9. Let it cool and enjoy!
This jelly is great on bread, pancakes, pastries—it’s all up to you. Remember to keep your pairing healthy, though. While elderberries have properties that can help decrease blood sugar levels, it is not a free pass for you to increase your sugar intake!
…And some pie!
And of course, a berry-related article will never be complete without talking about pie. Coincidentally, elderberries make the best pie in the world.
How? That’s because it’s sinfully delicious yet also holy nutritious at the same time. Here’s a quick recipe:
1. Prepare your pie’s crust.
2. Pour the elderberry jelly that we have made a while ago into the crust.
3. Add the top crust, or if you’re feeling a little bit more creative, do a lattice top.
4. Bake your pie for 40-45 minutes in an oven that has been pre-heated to 375F.
5. Slice and enjoy!
Elderberries surely are amazing. Hence, it really is unfortunate that a lot of people don’t know about it well. Not as familiar with them as strawberries, at least.
Lastly, A Quick Smoothie
This is one of the quickest and easiest way to enjoy Elderberries and get their health benefits.
- 1 1/2 cups of kefir or plain yogurt (we use kefir for the probiotics)
- 1 cup frozen strawberries
- 2-4 teaspoons Elderberry Extract from Norm’s Farms
- 1-2 ripe bananas (depends on their size, but they help naturally sweeten)
- 2 Tbsp. flax seed (optional)
- 1/4 honey or sweetener to taste
You may also add 1/4 cup blueberries or additional fruit based on your preference.
Berries Have Never Been This Exciting!
In conclusion, elderberries are great. They are full of vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients and components that help lower the risk of cancer, diabetes, and heart disease.
A few words of caution, though, elderberries cannot be consumed raw. Doing so may lead to vomiting and diarrhea. If you haven’t tried an elderberry before, you might also want to consult with your doctor to make sure that you are not allergic to it.
Asking your doctor about any new food item or product that you want to incorporate into your existing diet is a precautionary measure we strongly encourage, even if those and food and drinks are labeled as superfoods.
Finally, elderberries are also not recommended for children to eat. Thus, those who are pregnant and breastfeeding are also discouraged from them.
To everyone else who can enjoy elderberries, we invite you to try out the recipes we have shared with you above and share your own favorite recipes. We are always on the lookout for more fun and creative ways to have more elderberries into our diet, after all!