These terms are thrown around often and used to sell products which may or may not bestow these benefits.
So what are they? A functional food is a food product that when taken in a moderate and average serving size does not contain a therapeutic dose of any medicinal ingredients. However regular eating or drinking of these foods can overtime have an accumulated benefit which is not measurable in the single dose. The gentle and constant rhythmic exposure to these foods harmonises and nourishes bodily functions in the organism over time.
Super foods are foods which contain an extraordinarily dense volume, by weight of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, so that consuming a small amountimparts a great amount of nutrition -and/or they can be foods that have a broad-spectrum of nutrients, especially micro nutrients that are rare in foods.
Traditionally shrubs were used as a method of preserving raw fruit and herbs so as to have access to fresh food nutrition in times when it was seasonally unavailable. This is exactly how we make our shrubs, as traditional foods where there is more fruit by volume than any other ingredient in the bottle. Combined with high quality fresh and/or organic herbs and raw apple cider vinegar.
A few of the shrubs we make have ingredients that are exceptional and they can be included in the categories of functional foods and superfoods. My two favourites are our Mandarin and Pine needle shrub and the Davidson plum & Vanilla shrub, both contain fruit and parts of plants that are extra high in natural vitamin C and antioxidants. By being made into shrubs the traditional way, coldpressed, raw, slow and unpasteurised, these nutrients are preserved and highly bioavailable from the shrubs tonics.
ecause our shrubs are produced in the traditional way, unpasteurised coldpressed and raw,
Mandarin & Pine - our truest small scale, yard to bottle shrub to date - is made from mandarins grown in Genna’s back yard in Lismore (Bunjalung country) and pine needles from Pinus radiata trees growing on the hills of Mullumbimby (…) where Katrina lives.
We all know that mandarins are rich in vitamin C, however Pine needles contain over five times the amount of vitamin C of citrus fruit. Pine needles are also rich sources of essential oils and phenolic compounds that are a powerhouse of antioxidants, and have antimicrobial properties and immune enhancing effects. Research into the benefits of pine as an anti-inflammatory as well as it’s benefit in boosting memory and mental clarity, is promising and ongoing.
Davidson Plum & Vanilla - deepest purple and stunning. Davidson plum species are native to Northern NSW and QLD. A comparative study done by the RIRDC (Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation) of Davidson plum vs blueberries found that:
- the antioxidant capacity of davidson plum was 2.7 times higher than that of blueberries
- a lutein content twice that of Blueberries
- an Anthocyanin content greater than Blueberries
- a similar folate level
- a similar Zn (zinc) level
- higher levels of the minerals Mg (magnesium), Ca (calcium), P (phosphorus), K (potassium), Mn (manganese) and Cu (copper)
- Na (sodium) levels 3.6 times lower.
Our Davidson Plum shrub is made of mixed species all harvested at peak season in the rainforests of Terania Creek NSW. She’s a superfood, there’s no doubt.
By fermenting these potent botanical ingredients in raw apple cider vinegar, we can preserve their benefits well beyond their seasonal availability. They can be added to a daily diet as functional foods, boosting nutrition and supporting antioxidant and anti-inflammatory action in the body. If we can add to this equation on the daily, we tip the scales towards good health, disease prevention, optimum function, detoxification and vitality.