What are Currants?

What are Currants?

Currants are small red or black berries that grow on a vine. Black currants are a type of this fruit, known to have several nutritional benefits. Banned by the United States in 1911 due to belief that the plants hosted a plant disease known as white pine blister rust, they were re-introduced in 2003 after discovering the currants were not the cause of the disease. New variations of the plant have been bred for resistance to the disease, to help protect the United States timber industry. The berries are tart, small, round, and so deep in color they are almost literally black.

Forms of Black Currant

Black currant is available in several different forms. In addition to whole berries used as food, you can find it:

  • Freeze dried: This is typically the form ground into a powder and included in many different supplements.
  • Oil: Black currant oil is available for people who do not want to take the pill, and would rather drink it or use it in cooking. It is made by compressing the black currant seeds.
  • Juice: This is another option for people who want to drink the fruit, but instead of being made from the seeds, this is made from compressing the whole berry. This is much like a blueberry or blackberry juice drink.
  • Powder: This is an ideal choice for people who want to make their own shakes or drinks, but would rather not rely on a pre-made formula. This is also a good option when the whole fruit is not available.
  • Pills: This is the form most people use to supplement with, when they do not want to use other forms to add to their food. You can find pills in the form of capsules and tablets. They are available in several different dosage amounts.
  • Dried Leaves: the dried leaves of the black currant are also available, as they may have additional benefits not found in the whole berry.

Black Currant Uses

Black currant has many different uses, including:

  • treatment for a variety of health conditions such as: the common cold, muscle fatigue, PMS and menopause, gout, arthritis, and more.
  • as a food, included in several different dishes
  • flavoring for liquors and liqueurs and other drinks
  • topical treatment for insect bites and other skin wounds.

Read through this website to learn more about black currants and how including them in your diet may help to improve your health.