You've read that Sweet's Syrup is rich in antioxidants.  That sounds really good. But what does it mean, really?  

Your body contains highly reactive chemicals called free radicals. They're created when an atom or molecule gains or loses an electron.  This occurs naturally and quite normal. However, when free radicals occur in high concentration, they can damage cell components – like membranes, proteins, and DNA.  When cell DNA is damaged, cancers and other serious health conditions can develop.  

High concentrations of free radicals typically occur after exposure to radiation and/or environmental toxins.  Some toxins, including cigarette smoke and certain metals, contain large amounts of free radicals and stimulate the body to produce even more.

This is where antioxidants come to the rescue.  These chemicals seek and destroy free radicals, preventing them from causing damage and chronic disease.  Your body makes some antioxidants, but it relies on your diet for the rest. Fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are rich sources of dietary antioxidants.

Elderberry is one of the top medicinal plants in the world, used for millennia.  The flowers, fruit and leaves of the elderberry plant are excellent sources of antioxidants.  The berries get their dark black-purple color from anthocyanins, with 3.5 times the antioxidant power of Vitamin E.  Other good sources of antioxidants include raw honey, cinnamon, ginger, and cloves. This is the Sweet's ingredient list, a powerful combination that supports the immune system.

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September is Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.  Each year, 15,780 children (under age 21) are diagnosed with cancer in the United States.  About a quarter of them will not survive the disease, forever altering the lives of everyone around them.  September is a time to remember the children lost to cancer, to raise funds for research and care, and to salute the patients, families, hospital staff, volunteers, and survivors who live and work in this reality on a daily basis.  

In early 2018, Sweet's began donating elderberry syrup to nurses in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Levine Children's Hospital in Charlotte, NC.  Soon, this expanded to include the Pediatric Critical Care and Pediatric Oncology units. The little patients in these wards must be protected from infection, so it's important that their caregivers have strong immune systems and come to work healthy. This partnership brings so much joy to the Sweet's team.  Sweet’s has also been honored to provide syrup to several families dealing with cancer, with the goal of helping them stay healthy during their child’s treatment.

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In honor of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, Sweet’s will donate a free 16-ounce bottle to families coping with a child’s cancer.  This offer is limited to the first 100 respondents. Qualifying families should PM Sweet’s via Facebook or Instagram. Those in the Charlotte area will be given a location to pick up syrup.  If you live elsewhere, you’ll receive a special code to get a free bottle at  Simply pay for shipping.  If you know a friend who could benefit from this offer, please share! 

Sources: National Cancer Institute; Journal of Functional Foods (Vol. 18, Part B, October 2015, pp 941-958)

- Tracy Dygert for Sweet's Syrup

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