Red currant health benefits and therapeutic value

Red currant is a delicate fruit that also has many properties that are great for health.

Its latin name Ribes grossularia shows that it belongs to the Grossulariaceae family.

Its shrub, the currant bush that grows up to 40 to 50 inches (100 to 120 cm) tall, bears excellent tart berries of various colors.
Depending on the variety, currant can be red like the ‘Jonkeer Van Tets’, white like the ‘White Versailles’ or black like the ‘Black giant’.

Currant is divided into two many classes: bunch currant and gooseberries which have larger fruits.

Currants are grown in various European countries, especially Denmark, France and Poland.

These little berries are a favorite for their delicate taste, the joy of going to harvest them in summer, and the fact that they are really nutri-foods that are great for health.

Currant, a short story

Currants arrived in Western Europe during the Middle Ages. It seems to have come from several areas: Asia, North America.

As centuries went by, one particular village of French Lorraine called Bar-le-Duc became famous for its excellent currant jam with no seeds. It recipe, original and famous, calls for using goose feathers to pick out the seeds.

Currant health benefits and therapeutic value

Currant is a laxative. It helps digestion and improves intestinal transit. It is recommended in case of constipation and slow digestion.

Use: Blend gooseberry-type currant with their leaves. Filter and drink the resulting juice.

Red currant juice therapeutic effects

Currant and currant juice has antipyretic properties (that lower fever).
Currant juice is recommended as preventive protection against winter ailments.
Its juice is a powerful diuretic, effective in purifying renal routes. It is also advised in case of asthenia and weakening.

Its juice has purgative and appetite-enhancing properties to stimulate your appetite.

Currant is an interesting source of iron (1.2 mg / 3.5 oz (100 g)). It effectively helps fight anemia.

It also has very high levels of vitamin C (40 mg / 3.5 oz (100 g)). This makes currant a powerful antioxidant, effective against the havoc that free radicals wreck on our body, premature cell ageing and cardiovascular diseases.

Currant boasts anti-inflammatory properties that are very effective in case of arthritis and all sorts of inflammations.

Use: infusions of currant leaves. Drink several cups during the day.

This folkloric remedy is also effective to regulate arterial hypertension.

Currant is an excellent antibacterial. It is effective to fight against cough.

Currant is also a very good detoxifier. It purifies liver routes.

Currant provides many minerals and trace elements that are interesting for our body’s health: potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, iron, calcium and many vitamins A, B and C.

Cooking currant

Calorie intake of currant: between 45 and 55 kcal / 3.5 oz (100 g) depending on whether they are bunch currants or gooseberries.

Currant definitely deserves a place in your day-to-day cooking. It is simply succulent either eaten as is, or added to your sweet or salty courses.

Sweet-toothed persons love it in fruit salads, with its friends strawberries and raspberries. Making jam or seedless jelly, pies, clafoutis, muffins or crumbles all are supreme.

And you can still choose to make ice cream, juice, coulis, syrup, and add it to French cream.

For those who like sweet-and-sour pairings: heated in a pan, currants will pair with your meat (duck breasts, poultry and roasts) and also foie gras.

It gives taste to your sauces, hence its name “gooseberry”. The English would use it in their sauces when they ate roast geese.

Add it to seasoning for your mixed salads.

Savory ideas

Sprinkle a few currant berries on melted cheese toasts.

Use currant coulis to sweeten cottage cheese for a refreshing dessert.

These delicate and colored berries will decorate your main dishes and desserts.

Currant, beauty tips

Currant is also sought after in cosmetology. It has the power to cleanse, nourish and hydrate skin. It also fights premature skin ageing thanks to its antioxidant properties.

Natural currant face mask – Blend 3.5 oz (100 g) currant with olive oil and powdered oats. Spread resulting mix on healthy skin for 15 to 20 minutes. Rinse with clean water.

To hydrate skin – Blend currant and mix with cottage cheese. Apply to skin and rinse after 20 minutes.

Smart tip about currant

This fruit stains clothes easily. To remove stubborn currant stains, soak your laundry in milk for a couple hours. Then wash.

Keeping currant – Fragile currant only keep for a few days in the vegetable compartment of your refrigerator.


Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois):
Red currant shared by RitaE under © CC0 1.0

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