Why Salal Is Nature’s Best Kept Non-Secret

By Ben Hamill - July 06, 2019
Why Salal Is Nature’s Best Kept Non-Secret

The cancer-preventing, anti-ageing powerhouse properties of the salal berry may be the latest big-news heart-health reveal responsible for currently populating medical health headlines, but as it turns out, its heavenly properties aren’t exactly news to indigenous and traditional people and healers.

Medical health researchers are only just now discovering the vast extent of the salal berry’s anti-oxidant and other valuable properties. The small deep blue-purple fruit is positively jam-packed with healthy goodness. In fact, a recent study conducted by students at the University of Victoria revealed that the salal berry contains roughly 5 times the level of tannin found in blueberries, and at least 1.5 times the level of anthocyanin.

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News To Modern Science

It goes without saying that the sheer health value of wild food is very much considered to be unchartered territory as far as modern health research is concerned. And yet, it’s a field of knowledge that has been the stomping grounds of traditional healers for many centuries, and most likely a big part of the explanation as to why the occurrence of cancer is a strange and unlikely phenomenon among the people of the First Nations.

The salal, together with a variety of other fruits, berries and plants have been regular staple foods in the diets of the indigenous people of North America for as long as memory and nutrition records serve. It appears as if modern man has much to learn about the healing properties offered by our wonderful planet. And best of all is that when it’s consumed responsibly, it’s all there for the taking and costs absolutely nothing.

But Can I Eat It?

The problem with salal; and certainly with many other berries too; explains Victoria University biologist Dr. Peter Constable, is that it hasn’t been common knowledge that the small fruits are in actual fact edible; at least not until very recently.

Oddly enough, it had been a bottle containing dessert wine; of which salal had been a key ingredient; that first alerted Constable to the fact that salal could actually be ingested. The fact that it happened to be pleasant to the taste was an added bonus.

Salal is in Constable’s opinion one of Mother Nature’s grossly underestimated and undervalued edibles.

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