Our grandmothers and great-grandmothers already knew about the health-promoting properties of elderberries. Juice from the berries of the plant naturally strengthens the body, making it overcome infections faster. Check out the other benefits of drinking elderberry juice and how to make it yourself at home.
Elderberry juice is made from both flowers and fruits. Elderberry flowers are contrary to appearances … milky white and are found in numerous inflorescences. They are valuable for their high content of phenolic acids, flavonoids, mineral salts, sterols, tannins and organic acids. These substances force the body to produce sweat intensively, so that all pathogenic microorganisms are expelled with it. Lilac flowers also have antipyretic, diuretic and anti-inflammatory effects. So they help with such ailments as kidney problems, bladder problems, conjunctivitis and sore throat.
However, it is not the elderberry flowers that are the greatest source of vitamins and nutrients. The fruits contain pectin, anthocyanin glycosides, tannins, vitamins C, A and calcium and potassium salts.
Vitamin C is a well-known antidote for cold and flu. It strengthens the body’s immunity and reduces the development of free radicals. Meanwhile, vitamin A, more widely known as beta-carotene, improves skin tone and acts as a natural UV filter. It brightens and reduces the formation of discoloration, and is recommended for the prevention of cancer of the urinary tract and speech apparatus.
Elderberry fruits also have an analgesic effect. In particular, they help with sciatica complaints and neuralgia. They also improve intestinal peristalsis and speed up the stomach.
Unfortunately, raw elderberries are highly poisonous. Sambunigrine, which breaks down into harmful hydrogen cyanide, is responsible for this. Consumption of raw fruit can cause nausea and vomiting. Therefore, before eating the berries should be thoroughly dried or boiled so that sambunigrin loses its harmful properties.
Where to start preparing elderberry juice?
To prepare elderberry juice, it is necessary to collect flowers and fruits at the right time. It is best to start collecting flowers in May and June, when they are not yet fully developed. Once collected, they should be dried, but should not be allowed direct contact with sunlight – then they may lose their valuable nutritional value.
Elderberry fruits are harvested in August and September. Whole, ripe clusters are cut together with the stalks, and then dried.
Recipe for elderberry juice
- 1 kg of ripe elderberries, without green parts,
- juice of one lemon.
Transfer the fruit to a juicer, then follow the instructions for the machine. Add sugar – 1 serving of sugar per 3 servings of fruit – and lemon juice. Stir the solution until the sugar dissolves. Pour into scalded jars and pasteurize for 15 minutes. Store the juice in a dark and cool place.
How and when to drink elderberry juice?
Elderberry juice can be drunk for immunity – 4 tablespoons diluted with water is a daily dose of vitamins and other strengthening substances. Drink the solution during or after a meal – never on an empty stomach.
main photo: unsplash.com/Wesual Click