What is Birch Tree Sap?
Birch water, a waterlike sap tapped from birch trees, is the latest beverage to join an alternative water market. It is genuine, 100% natural living water that people in rural Europe have been enjoying for centuries as a natural detox product. Birch trees are widespread in areas of the Northern Hemisphere, in which temperate and subarctic climates allow them to thrive. Due to its rising popularity, birch juice has become more widely available at natural food stores and supermarkets. It’s typically marketed as birch water to improve its appeal to consumers.
How Does it Taste?
Fresh birch tree sap is described as water-like, with hints of sweet flavors. It has a clear and uncolored appearance, similar to that of regular water. After a few days, birch water ferments and starts to taste more acidic. Birch tree water is thinner than maple syrup. Its texture is often compared to that of coconut water, as it is somewhat silky. The lure of the slightly sweet beverage is its mineral content, in addition to its lower-sugar content than coconut water, and is arguably the lowest-sugar plant-based beverage. Our Birch Water comes in 6 different flavours and an original, unflavoured version.
The nutrition profile of birch tree sap varies depending on the species of birch tree, in addition to environmental and anthropogenic factors. Generally, all variations of birch tree water contain a combination of several nutrients, including a small amount of sugar and amino acids. Birch water is known to consist of up to a dozen minerals, which provide many important health benefits. Calcium and potassium are the minerals typically found in the highest amounts in birch sap.
Birch water also contains a high level of manganese, a mineral that helps blood sugar regulation and bone structure through calcium absorption. Manganese is a component of the antioxidant enzyme superoxide dismutase, an enzyme that helps fight naturally occurring free radicals that "can damage cell membranes and DNA," according to the university. Perhaps the most important health benefit of birch juice is its hydrating properties. It has been used historically as a diuretic, and claimed to have “cleansing” and “detoxifying” properties for this reason.
How to Consume Birch Water
The most common way to consume birch water is by drinking it plain. However, there are many other ways that you can enjoy this nutritious liquid. For example, you can pour it your quiet blender to add it to smoothies for a nutrition and flavor boost. Some people use it in place of regular water to brew herbal teas. You can also add your own healthy spices and seasonings, such as ginger and turmeric, to birch water to enhance the flavor. Birch water can also be used to make syrup, vinegar, and alcoholic beverages such as wine and beer. Additionally, the clear liquid is sometimes used as an ingredient to make certain types of candy. Despite its high mineral content, it is not miracle water. It is more than regular water, but only as an addition to your drinking occasions. It is not a medicine, but more of a beverage that has hydrating and health benefits.
How is Birch Water Extracted?
In Autumn, the birch trees go into “sleep mode” shedding their leaves as a strategy to survive harsh cold weather conditions. When the temperature in spring gets warmer, it awakens the birch tree and pushes the sap to flow through the tree from root to tip where it is naturally filtered. This is when the harvesters get ready to collect the precious health elixir. The harvest season is short, typically 3-4 weeks and happens only once a year prior to the blooming of the leaves. The collection of the nutritious sap follows a traditional, ecological and gentle harvesting method which does not harm the health of the trees. The tree then grows new leaves and starts the growing season, continuing nature’s renewable energy cycle.
Birch Water for Everyone
There have not been any reported negative effects from consuming birch tree sap. However, those with allergies to birch should avoid drinking it. Drinking excessive amounts of birch juice should be avoided. Birch trees in some areas may accumulate heavy metals, which can cause adverse health effects when consumed in high amounts. With that being said, birch tree water is resistant to toxic minerals, so it’s unlikely to contain unsafe levels of heavy metals. Additionally, due to its perishability, birch tree water should be consumed within 5-7 days of opening. Consuming birch water after it has fermented can be unsafe for some people, especially for those with compromised immune systems.