Image courtesy of Healthline.
Who knew so many benefits could be fit into such a tiny berry! But that’s exactly the case with elderberries derived from the European elder tree, Sambucus nigra. Elderberry has been used throughout history by various cultures due to the helpful effects that they can produce on the immune system. But did you also know that elderberries might be able to help you lose weight too? That’s right, enjoying elderberries along with a healthy diet and exercise regimen might help you lose those extra pounds.
In this post, we’re going to touch on:
- What exactly is elderberry and how you can take it
- The major benefits of elderberries
- How elderberry can help with weight loss
What is Elderberry and How Can You Take It?
A small berry that can pack quite the punch
As mentioned above, elderberries typically come from the European elder tree that is native to Europe, but found in other parts of the world as well. The tree is easily recognizable with it’s bunches of small, dark purple/black berries and white clusters of flowers in the spring. People have been enjoying the fruit and flowers of this tree for a very long time, creating jams, syrups, tonics, and even wine to ease everything from cold and flu symptoms, to inflammation. The berries themselves need to be cooked in order for them to be edible, but the elder flowers can be added to salads or eaten raw as a garnish.
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Today, many people enjoy the benefits of elderberries either by creating jams and syrups, or be taking them in the form of gummies or capsule supplements. Do a quick Google search and you’ll find recipes for cakes, pies, and jellies galore--which is such an easy way to incorporate this fruit into your daily routine.
- Elderberries have been used in folk medicines for years and are known to help symptoms of colds, flus, inflammation.
- You can cook with elderberries (and the flowers as well), or get your dosage from a gummy, capsule, or lozenge.
- Elderberries are easy to make a part of your daily fruit intake.
What Are Some of the Benefits of Elderberry?
Elderberries have some impressive benefits
If you’re ready to take the advice of centuries of folk medicine and add elderberry to your routine, you’re in for some great benefits! There’s a lot packed into those small berries including:
- Anti-oxidants. These allow elderberries to help you fight cold and flu symptoms --especially if you take them before symptoms get too bad--and help your body deal with inflammation. Elderberries may even be able to protect your heart.
- Vitamins A and C. Vitamins A and C help keep your immune system functioning at peak performance, and can reduce inflammation.
- Low calories. You can easily cook down elderberries for a light, quick, and healthy snack.
- High in dietary fiber. Get 7 grams of fiber per 100 grams of fresh berries and you’ll have a quarter of your daily intake!
- Source of phenolic acid. Reduce stress in your body with the help of elderberries’ supply of phenolic acid.
- Weight loss. Adding elderberry to your diet or with a supplement may be able to help you slim down.
Elderberry is easy to include into your daily routine, and it has some pretty amazing benefits to offer. However, make sure you discuss with your doctor the pros and cons of adding this unique berry to your lifestyle. If you’re on other medications, there is the possibility of interactions that could lead to some side effects. It is also important to note that only the cooked berries and the flowers of this tree should be consumed, as the bark, stems, and branches contain a toxic substance.
Elderberry and Weight Loss
Can elderberries help you lose weight?
One of the most talked about benefits of adding elderberries to your lifestyle routine is that they may help in weight loss. If you’re looking to shed a few pounds--or get started on your exercise regime--elderberries may be able to help you. There have been studies that show adding elderberry to your weight loss regimen might help you lose those pounds. Taking elderberry juice in conjunction with a healthy diet and ample amounts of exercise has been shown to help with weight loss.
No one ever said that elderberries will be that “magical ingredient” that you need to shed those excess pounds. The best way to lose unwanted pounds is to first take a look at your diet, and see where you can start to add more fruits and veggies, lean proteins, and whole grain items. Elderberries would fit in nicely here, since they’re low calorie and have the dietary fiber you need to help stay full throughout the day. Dropping weight also means you’ll need to get out there an exercise! It doesn’t matter what type of cardio you choose--walking, jogging, swimming, etc.-- just make sure to make it a part of your day. And don’t forget about anaerobic strength training! Using cooked elderberries or elderberry supplements would be a nice complement to this type of weight loss routine.
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Studies have also shown that elderberries can be helpful to already obese people, by reducing chronic inflammation and improving blood flow. By taking care of these two issues, elderberries can make you much less likely to gain weight.
- Elderberries can help you lose weight by decreasing inflammation and increasing blood flow.
- Used together with a healthy diet and exercise routine, you should start to see weight loss.
- Elderberries make an easy addition to your diet, or can be taken as a supplement.
If you’re looking to lose that last bit of weight, or simply want to kick start your weight loss routine, using elderberries might be a good option for you. Whether you choose to use elderberries in a syrup, tincture, or a capsule, you always want to discuss your plan with your healthcare provider first.