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Inflorescence of elderberry contain a very complex chemical composition. They contain glycosides sambunigrin, retinopa a similar glycoside Aldrin; organic acids: Valerian, coffee, acetic, malic and chlorogenic; semi-solid volatile oil, choline, utilizati, isoamylamine, carotene, tannins, mucous and parafinovoe substances; sugar.
In elderberry contains ascorbic acid - vitamin C (50 mg%), carotene, sambucin, resin, glucose (2.8%), fructose (2.5%), free acids (mainly malic); amino acids, tyrosine, and coloring materials.
In the fresh leaves of elderberry contains large amounts of ascorbic acid - vitamin C (up to 280 mg%), a lot of carotene (0.15%); and dried leaves contain provitamin A1. Found in the leaves also sambunigrin, essential oil, hexanoyl and glycolic aldehydes, traces of alkaloids, tannins, resinous substances (has laxative effect).
In the bark contains essential oil, choline, phytosterol.
Before the villagers with the onset of spring tore the tops of young shoots of elder and together with other herbs used in food as salad. However, it is necessary to have in mind that the leaves of the elderberry are strongly driven Kabat and urine.
From the juice of the berries after fermentation, drove vodka. Elder flowers added to white grape wine and vinegar, give them a nutmeg taste. The fruit juice used for coloring alcoholic beverages.
Elderberry previously widely used for okrashivaniya cotton and silk fabrics in black color. While the juice of the berries added green vitriol. Mixed with alum, the berries juice gives a blue dye. From the juice of the berries, with the addition of a small amount of alum and vinegar, did the ink. Rural beauty juice of the berries blackened his eyebrows.
From the fresh flowers of the elderberry with lemon juice, zest and water by fermentation was preparing a refreshing drink.
Earlier it was believed that elderberry quickly sacrificed chickens. Don't know whether this is so. But our ancestors juice of berries exterminating bed bugs, that's for sure. The elder flowers draped the apples during their storage; they are better preserved and become a good smell.
Dangerous properties of elderberry
A special danger for humans and animals represent the fruits of the red elderberry. In any case, do not use them for food. If you touched the berries with your hands, then you definitely need to wash them with soap and water in case of contact with mucous membranes or cuts (scratches), you should immediately consult a doctor.
Elder berries also can harm your health. It is not recommended for women during pregnancy, diabetes insipidus, diseases of colitis.
People suffering from Crohn's disease this berry is strictly contraindicated. In addition, the use of black elderberry may have a negative impact on the health of people with chronic diseases of the stomach and in cases of individual intolerance.
Remember that to distinguish red from black elder is not always easy. The color of the berries they can be distinguished only at maturity, and during periods when for therapeutic purposes, used twigs and leaves of the plant, they is difficult to distinguish. If you are not 100% sure in your knowledge – do not risk better to instead use not to heavy poisoning.