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Black Rosehip (Rosa pimpinellifolia L.); Overview and Benefits

Last updated on March 19, 2023

Black Rosehip is a wild fruit of the Rosa family, which is extremely beneficial for health. Its color is purple-black and it is chubby compared to the pointed oval rosehip we know.

Rosehip contains many components such as natural antioxidants, minerals and vitamin C, which are essential for human health. For example, it is reported that 100 grams of rose hips and a crate of oranges have the same vitamin C content.

For these reasons, rosehip fruit has been used in different ways for many years as a preventive food source against some diseases.

Rosehip is a perennial herb belonging to the genus Rosa, subfamily Rosacideae of the Rosaceae family. Rosehip is a plant that is resistant to environmental conditions and grows spontaneously in mountainous areas and is a thorny bush with a height of 1-3 m.

Rosa pimpinellifolia L. fruit, known as “black rosehip“, is one of the rosehip species that are not as well known as red rosehip but is superior in terms of some compounds it contains.

Black rosehip fruit is not as common in the field as red rosehip and therefore is not consumed by humans as much as other varieties of rosehip. In addition, its transformation into new products (marmalade, molasses, fruit juice) like other species is not as common as other varieties of rose hips.

It is native to Western Asia and Northern Europe and grows in Turkiye, especially in Gümüşhane, Bayburt, Erzurum, Ağrı and Van provinces.

Depending on the type and the region where it grows, the flowering period of rose hips is usually between April and June, and the fruit collection period is between September and October. There are 70-100 species of rose hips worldwide and about 25% (27 species) grow in Turkiye.

Rosa pimpinellifolia L. is known as “Rose Pimprenelle” in France, “Klitrose” in Denmark, “Burnet Rose” or “Pimpinell Rose” in England, “Trollnype” in Norway, “Bodicasti Sipek” in Slovenia, Iceland’ It is also known as “Prickly Rose” or “Sleeping Beauty”, “Dünen Rose” in Germany and “Duinroos” in Netherlands.

It is thought that black rosehip is not consumed as much as red rosehip due to its aroma and taste. From this point of view, it is thought that it is less known and consumed because it does not appeal to the usual habits and has not been tried enough.

It is obvious that this food source, which is very good as an antioxidant source, can be evaluated economically and it can be easier for people to reach natural antioxidants.

It is known that black rosehip fruit grows naturally in different regions of Turkiye and is used for different purposes locally, albeit insufficiently. According to TÜBİVES (Turkish Plants Data Services) data, it grows naturally in Eastern and Northeastern Anatolia in Turkiye, especially in Ağrı, Ardahan, Bayburt, Erzurum, Iğdır, Kars, Van, Konya and Çankırı provinces.

In some regions, it is also referred to as “koyungözü“, “siyah kuşburnu” or “şilan” in Turkiye. Black rosehip is a short shrub with a length of about 1 m and the number of thorns is high. The fruit is purple-black mixed, flattened on the side, and hairless. It grows on rocky slopes, volcanic rocks and limestone soils and at an altitude of 1200-2750 meters.

In a study, it was determined that black rose hips contain 57.94% water, 2.64% carbohydrates, 2.41% ash (minerals) and 3.12% protein (For more detailed information, you can visit this article; Physicochemical Properties, Antioxidant Activities, and Chemical Compositions of Extracts Obtained from Rosa pimpinellifolia L. Flesh and Seeds Using Different Methods and Solvents).

Health Benefits of Black Rosehip

The fruits of most of the plants with this type of bush are used in the treatment of diseases such as colds in different regions. Like red rosehip, black rosehip also provides incredible benefits in strengthening the immune system and fighting various infections.

Vitamin C, a kind of antioxidant, prevents the proliferation of harmful cells in the body. As it is known, vitamin C supports the bone and muscle system by helping the body produce collagen. In addition, vitamin C increases the absorption of iron from the intestines. As mentioned above, black rosehip fruit is among the fruits richest in vitamin C.

In addition to vitamin C, black rosehip fruit contains important amounts of vitamins A, B6, E and K, Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Sodium, Zinc, anthocyanin and some very useful molecules minerals for health such as Thiamine, Riboflavin, Niacin.

5 grams of dried black rosehip alone is enough to meet approximately 35% of daily vitamin C needs, 5% of vitamin A needs, 1% of calcium needs and 5% of fiber needs.

However, black rosehip fruit is known to have very high antioxidant and phenolic content. In some studies, it is stated that black rosehip has a higher antioxidant potential than red.

It is reported that it has very high values ​​in terms of bioactive components compared to other similar plants. From this point of view, black rosehip fruit is thought to be a good source of bioactive phytochemicals due to its high phenolic and anthocyanin content. These ingredients have antiradical effects and are very important bioactive components for health, especially in the prevention of cancer.

In most of the studies, it is reported that black rosehip fruit is good for many types of cancer, rheumatic diseases, constipation and urinary tract problems. In addition to these, it is reported that it has important effects against blood pressure disorders or cholesterol problems. It also has antitumor and antibacterial effects.

It can be used to lower cholesterol and relieve constipation. It is also good for heart diseases and vascular occlusions.

It is reported that black rosehip, which has a protective feature against free radicals, prevents the growth and development of cancer cells. For this reason, it is a very important food source in terms of preventing cancer diseases or building resistance to such diseases.

The increase in new searches such as alternative medicine and treatment methods for some of the above-mentioned health problems has increased the number of research and studies on fruits that usually grow in natural environments, such as black rosehip. Rosehip fruit is one of the wild fruits that are emphasized in this context. However, studies on black rosehip are not that intense.

In light of the limited number of studies on black rosehip fruit, it can be said that it is good for many diseases. To summarize, its high levels of vitamin C and antioxidative components are the biggest helpers of the immune system.

On top of that, when the vitamins and minerals mentioned above are added, it turns out to be a great source of nutrients to increase body resistance.

It is reported that black rosehip, which is reported to be good for anemia with its high amount of iron mineral, has many benefits such as protecting eye health, protecting the skin, preventing kidney disorders and eliminating liver-related problems.

Black rosehip fruit is a very good source of bioactive phytochemicals due to its high phenolic and anthocyanin content. It is known to have very high values ​​in terms of bioactive components compared to other similar plants.

As a result, black rosehip fruit has a very good dyeing feature. In this respect, it can also be used in the food dye industry, where very difficult applications are made today.

It is especially suitable for use as a food coloring or natural sweetener in products consumed by children. Considering all the features mentioned here, it is seen that it is a very important food source for people who pay attention to organic nutrition.

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