Hawthorn Berries Shan Zha – Although Hawthorn is a widely used folk ingredient, it is only beginning to gain popularity in North America as an herbal remedy. Hawthorn berries are full of nutrition and even scientists are interested in better understanding their benefits.
The plant is native to many areas of the Northern Hemisphere where the climate is temperate. Hawthorn is one of the many names of the genus crataegus, which contains hundreds of different species of flowering and fruiting plants. Crataegus belongs to the Rosaceae family, making it a cousin of roses and raspberries.
Hawthorn Berries Shan Zha
The similarity between rose and crataegus is easily seen when comparing the fruits of the two plants. The deep red berries found on hawthorns are just like the seeds of the Cherokee rose. Hawthorns are small trees with triangular leaves and white flowers that resemble cherry blossoms.
What Is Hawthorn Berry
Hawthorns are hardy in cold weather and begin their fruiting season in the fall. In the cold months, birds like to eat the berries. Hawthorn flowers feed on insects that live on nectar, such as hummingbird moth caterpillars.
Crataegus is so ubiquitous that many different cultures have used it for ornamental shrubs as well as a food source. Different parts of the world have their own version of foods made from hawthorn berries.
Hawthorn berries have a tart and slightly sweet taste. A little tart and sour makes the berries perfect for sweet treats and candies. In Iran, hawthorn is used in jams, and sometimes eaten raw. A Persian snack that is still popular with children today is fruit rolls made from candied hawthorn. Hawthorn berries are also used as jam in Mexico, made into candies called rielitos, and added to punch at Christmas time. In the UK, the fruits are used to make wine and of course, jelly.
Manitoulin Island, located in the center of Lake Huron, Ontario is another place where hawthorn species are native.
Dried Hawthorn Hawberry Slices Esgreen Enjoy / Slow / Green
In the 1860s when non-native people began to live on the island, the native Ojibwe recommended hawthorn berries to prevent illness during the long and harsh winters.
Hawthorn was used as a primary source of vitamin C to prevent scurvy by natives and Europeans.
Those born on the island, even today, are called Haweaters because of the tradition of eating haw berries.
In Asia, Hawthorn is very popular, and the main species used is crataegus pinnatifida. Beverages made from the fruit are common in China and South Korea, including alcoholic beverages. Hawthorn can be added to food as it is often used in candies or other sweet foods as found in other cultures.
Chao Shan Zha Fried Hawthorn Berries
Hawthorn berries are called Shānzhā (山查) in Chinese. Shānzhā is used to relieve digestive issues in traditional Chinese Herbalism. As a warming herb, hawthorn helps people with excess Yin energy. It is classified as a sweet herb, which makes it useful for replenishing Blood and Qi in the body.
In Traditional Chinese Medicine, all herbs are associated with specific organs and energy centers (called meridians) according to their flavor profile. Hawthorn is interesting because it has effects on several different organs. It is associated with the liver, spleen, and heart.
Shānzhā also has bitter qualities, making it a great herb to help relieve digestive issues. The astringent quality of bitter herbs in TCM is important for preventing stagnation in the stomach, and all the way through the digestive tract.
One reason that hawthorn berries remain a popular beverage ingredient, especially in tea, is because of its stomach-soothing quality. A cup of hawthorn tea after a meal is a great way to keep the digestive tract healthy.
Amazing Health Benefits Of Hawthorne Fruit
Along with many traditional herb species, scientists are interested in why some plants have persisted for centuries as health remedies. They want to understand why certain plants seem to have beneficial health properties and they do this by looking at the chemical makeup of plants. There are still many unknown chemical compounds from the plant world, so the study of plants is very important even today.
It has been widely used as a food and a source of life-saving food for people in history that the hawthorn berry means that the fruit has benefits for nutrition, but what does science show?
Hundreds of research articles and papers on the various species within the crataegus genus exist, due to the distribution and use of the plant worldwide.
Let’s focus on the species crataegus pinnatifida, the one that is widely used in Asia and in traditional Chinese herbalism. Crataegus pinnatifida has a surprising number of different chemical compounds found within its fruit. There are many other compounds found in the leaves and seeds of the plant.
Hawthorn: A Little Known Super Fruit
A very wide range of lignans can be found in this type of hawthorn. Lignan is a type of polyphenols found in plants and seeds. Lignans are the focus of much research due to their reported benefits for human health.
Dineolignans are a sub-class of lignans. A new dineolignan named crataeguslignan, which has not been found in nature before, was discovered in the species crataegus pinnatifida. Crataeguslignan has been shown to have b-amyloid inhibitory activities.
Amyloids are proteins that occur naturally in the body. People with certain diseases, such as Alzheimer’s, have high levels of amyloids that seem to accumulate over time, causing problems. Researchers are particularly interested in crataeguslignan’s ability to fight the buildup of these proteins.
Besides this discovery from the hawthorn berry, natural compounds obtained from plants have been widely studied for their anti-amyloid properties. These compounds may be used in the future to develop therapies for Alzheimer’s and other diseases.
Hawthorn (shan Zha)
Another sub-class of lignans is sesquineolignans. The researchers found three previously undiscovered sesquineolignans found in crataegus pinnatifida named, cratapinnatifidas A-C (1, 2, and 3). Other research has discovered seven other types of new sesquineolignans from the seeds of the same hawthorn species.
Another important compound found in crataegus pinnatifida species is flavonoids. The researchers created an extract using the flavonoids found in this type of hawthorn. They looked at the effect of the compounds on the intestinal epithelial barrier exposed to inflammatory proteins.
These proteins, called cytokines, can cause problems in the intestines by disrupting their normal barrier functions. Excess cytokines are seen in diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease and celiac disease.
The epithelial barrier works by stopping bacteria from entering the intestines and regulating the absorption of nutrients. Cytokine proteins cause breakdown of the epithelial barrier. The flavonoid extract from crataegus pinnatifida helps the damaged epithelial barrier cells to function better.
Shanzha Fruit Images, Stock Photos & Vectors
A review of all available data on the polyphenolic content of cratageus pinnefidata summarizes the information and health benefits.
Hawthorn is made of many antioxidant type compounds such as procyanidin C1, epicathechin, and isoquesrcitrin. The main compounds found in berries include procyanidin C1, rutin, procyanidin B2, epicatechin and chlorogenic acid. Antioxidants protect hawthorn plants in the wild and are the main reason they have so many health benefits for the human body.
Studies have shown that hawthorn has benefits for healthy blood cholesterol levels and cardioprotective properties. Polyphenolic compounds and triterpene acids are the recommended antioxidants for heart health.
Other benefits that hawthorn’s complex antioxidants include are healthy blood sugar levels, benefits for asthma, and even for age-defying benefits for the skin.
Guo Yi Tang Hawthorn Berry Tea (shanzha Xiaozhi Keli) Herbal Supplement 150g (15g*10packets)
Metabolic syndrome is a group of different medical conditions that occur at the same time. High blood sugar, hypertension, and obesity occurring together in a patient are classified as metabolic syndrome.
The prevalence of metabolic syndrome, especially in the United States, has led to increased research into various treatments for the condition. Traditional herbal medicines are an area of focus for many of these studies, as they still persist after thousands of years of use.
Shows promise in all the main areas affected by Metabolic Syndrome. Hawthorn has been shown to support healthy blood sugar levels and provide heart protection. It fights high blood fat levels with two of its triterpenic acids, oleanolic acid and ursolic acid. These two triterpenic acids reduce the enzymes that create high blood cholesterol bringing them back to healthy levels. Other studies have shown that hawthorn also helps reduce obesity.
All the research done on the hawthorn berry means that in the future, the plant will continue to be preserved and may even become new treatments and medicines.
Bulk Hawthorn Berry (shan Zha) Powder
Hawthorn berry tea is a great choice for anyone looking to support their health in a quick way. Hawthorn tea is excellent and can be mixed with other teas for their health benefits. We recommend brewing hawthorn berry tea with red sage (salvia militorhiza) tea as a super blend for heart health and balanced qi.
Bu, X.-L., Rao, P. P., & Wang, Y.-J. (2015). Anti-amyloid Aggregation Activity of Natural Compounds: Implications for Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery.
Cheng, Z.-Y., Lou, L.-L., Yang, P.-Y., Song, X.-Y., Wang, X.-B., Huang, X.-X., & Song , S.-J. (2019). Seven new neuroprotective sesquineolignans isolated from Crataegus pinnatifida seeds.
Liu, F., Zhang, X., & Ji, Y. (2020). Total Flavonoid Extract from Hawthorn (Crataegus pinnatifida) Improves Inflammatory Cytokines-Evoked Epithelial Barrier Deficit.
Shan Zha (hawthorn Fruit, Fructus Crataegi, 山楂)
Pandey, K. B., & Rizvi, S. I. (2009).