Usefulness of Elderberry Juice
by Kevin Pederson
throughout Europe and has a long history of medicinal applications. In addition to the
berries, the bark leaves and root of the tree have all been shown to have active
properties. The berries themselves must be allowed to ripen fully before picking as
the unripe fruit contains poisonous alkaloids and cyanogenic glycosides. The alkaloids
are characterized by their bitterness and are chemically related to quinine, caffeine,
nicotine and strychnine.

The cyanogenic glycosides release poisonous hydrocyanic acid. This compound can
be lethal to small animals, but in the doses present in the unripe elderberry, tends
only to bring tears to the eyes of adults. While it is important to choose only ripe
elderberries, the presence of poisons in the unripe fruit should not put you off this
useful berry. Think of the well-loved potato. A green or sprouting potato contains the
poison solanine (another alkaloid) which should be avoided, but this hasn't stopped
millions of people from enjoying the standard untainted version.

In bygone days elderberries were illicitly added to red wine and port to enhance their
color. Leading doctors carried out repeated studies to discover that it was only port
that had been diluted with elderberry juice that had this anti-neuralgic property. The
genuine article had no such value. As a result of their investigation, the physicians of
Prague recommended a combination of 30g of elderberry juice and 10g of port wine
in the treatment of sciatica and neuralgia.


About The Author

Kevin Pederson has been managing a number of natural home remedies websites
which have information on
.
Elderberry juice supplies vitamin C to
assist in the prevention and
treatment of colds. Elderberry juice
also acts as a demulcent to soothe
the chest. It also acts to induce
sweating (a property described as
sudorific) which has been commonly
held to be beneficial in the early
stages of a feverish cold. Elderberry
juice also has mild laxative and
diuretic (the promotion of water loss)
properties. For variety, try mixing
elderberry juice with apple juice,
blackberry juice or rhubarb juice.

The elderberry tree grows wild
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