Currants are generally high utility plant. This is a delicious shrub normally growing to1-1.5 m tall. Currants consist of red currant, black currant or gooseberries. The zante currants, that are small berries are not involved in it. Currants are grown on about 78 acres in Washington State. Red currant is slightly sourer than black currant
Red currants are highly flavored and that is the reason it is used for making jams and jellies. They can grow in hard and cold climates and its plant requires winter chills. Thus all type of currants is commercially produced. The crop requires low number of inputs and has a high return interest that is the reason why currants are highly produced in California, British Columbia, and parts of eastern United States.
Health benefits of red currants:
The red currants contain vitamin C, iron, potassium and fiber. They are good for immune system. The red currant jelly is effective for minor burns because of its antiseptic property. You can apply jelly on the affected area after cooling with cold water.
Red currant is also helpful in maintaining the electrolyte balance. As because of its red color it is rich in anthocynins and proanthocyanidin. Anthocynin is an effective antioxidant that can scavenge the free radicals in the body and also prevent it from causing adverse effect.
Red currants are very useful for diabetic patients. Heart patient, cancer patient and people suffering from aging can also get benefits from red currants. Proanthocyanidin are colorless compound and it can be converted to anthocynins. Many herbalist consider red currant berries to have fever reducing, sweat inducing, menstrual flow including mildly laxative, appetite increasing, blood cleansing and digestive properties.
Tea which is made up of dried red currant leaves is said to ease the symptoms of gout and rheumatism and also be useful in compresses for poorly healing wounds, and as a gargling solution for mouth infections. It is a storehouse of active antioxidants, as measured by TEAC method. It helps to combat the destructive free radicals generated by the body every day which are in turn responsible for aging and health degeneration.