ElderBeliefs
There are many varying uses for the Elderberry, some which date back many years. Still today it is used in many therapies for a variety of ailments. Below we will describe some of the varying uses and benefits of this beautiful tree and its lovely berries.

Benefits and Medicinal properties
It is believed that the Elderberry has high levels of antioxidant activity. It can lower cholesterol , improve vision and boost the immune system.

It is also believed to improve heart health and is good for coughs and viral infections. People who took the Elderberry juice claimed less severe symptoms and improved faster than those that had not ingested it. It is claimed that Elderberry juice was used in Panama in 1995 to treat a Flu epidemic.

Other traditional uses for this popular berry is as an antiseptic wash for wounds or even as an eye wash for infections such as conjunctivitis. It has also been used for cosmetic purposes where Elderflower water can assist to tone, soften and restore the skin and light freckles.

Due to its diuretic and detoxifying properties it is also considered useful in weight management.

Elderberries contain organic pigments, tannin, amino acids, carotenoids, flavonoids, sugar, rutin, viburnic acid, Vitamin A and B and a substantial amount of Vitamin C.

Organic Elderberry TinctureThey are also a mild laxative. The Flavonoids assist with the antioxidant effect and protect cells from damage. It has been established that it is a great aid in treating Cardiovascular disease.

Another use that is not so widely known is that the white, petalled blossoms can be good ingredients in tea, pancakes custards and muffins.

The Elderberry can be used for the treatment of flu, allergies and can also aid respiratory health. Chinese medicine uses the Elderberry soaked in wine, to treat rheumatism and traumatic injury.

Music and Folklore
The branches are/were often used to make flutes by the Native Americans. This brought about the name ‘ the tree of music’.

It was widely believed that it could ward off evil spirits, some say witches would congregate under the plant when it is fruiting. If you cut down an Elder tree the Elder witch would appear and take her revenge. It was said that you should only cut it down whilst chanting a rhyme to the Elder witch.

Only the blue variety are good for eating, but they should be cooked first as they do contain when raw a cyanide type chemical.

So as we can see this Elderberry is a wonderful piece of nature that is still assisting us today in the treatment of many varieties of ailments. There have been studies to show its effects over the years and many still swear by its hidden properties. Along with this it is also a very attractive plant/tree with beautiful blue toned berries that can produce a lovely wine!

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