Also known as: Airelle, Arándano, Bilberry Fruit, Bilberry Leaf, Black Whortles, Bleaberry, Brimbelle, Burren Myrtle, Dwarf Bilberry, Dyeberry, European Bilberry, Feuille de Myrtille, Fruit de Myrtille, Gueule Noire, Huckleberry, Hurtleberry, Mauret, Myrtille, Myrtille Européenne, Myrtilli Fructus, Raisin des Bois, Swedish Bilberry, Trackleberry, and Whortleberry, Wineberry.
History: This particular species, which is found throughout Europe, Northern Asia and Western North America, is harvested for its deliciously tart berries to make jams and pies. However, the fresh and dried leaf, has also been used in medicine for centuries. In fact, studies suggest that the antioxidant content of bilberry may help to prevent a number of diseases, including atherosclerosis, cancer and age-related macular degeneration. Bilberry leaf decoctions have been used to lower blood sugar in diabetes.
Modern Use: Currently, bilberry research is focused on the treatment of ocular disorders, vascular disorders, and diabetes mellitus.