As people become more health-conscious, superfoods are all the rage. The elderberry is one such food. From ancient history to today, the elderberry has been used to treat a variety of ailments. The ancient Egyptians used the berry to heal burns and improve complexion while Native Americans used the berry to treat infections. Today, the berry is commonly taken as a supplement to treat cold and flu symptoms, aches and pains, swelling, inflammation, headaches, and infections. Check out more facts about this superfood below.
- Elderberry trees and shrubs grow best in temperate and subtropical climates.
- The plants grow best in swampy areas with plenty of water, fertile and well-drained soil, and full or partial sun.
- The trees are native to Europe.
- An individual tree can grow up to 30 feet tall.
- Each tree or shrub can produce between 12 to 15 pounds of elderberries each year.
- One plant can survive between 80 to 100 years in the wild.
- Their strong root system helps prevent erosion.
- Small white flowers grow on the trees. These are known as elderflowers.
- Elderflowers can be eaten and are usually in syrups, juices, and teas.
- The berries grow in small black or black-bunches.
- The raw berries, bark, and leaves are poisonous and can cause stomach problems.
- The elderberry needs to be cooked in order to be consumed.
- Elderberries contain small amounts of lectins and cyanide. These substances are removed during cooking.
- Elderberries can be used to make juice, jams, chutneys, pies, and wine.
- Elderberries can help fight cancer.
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