Mostly in our daily walk around, we come across some foods that are rich and fully loaded with what the body requires to effectively function. Most often than not, they appear unattractive, cheap and too local for our liking and consumptions.
One of those is molasses. It is commonly produced and found in the northern parts of Nigeria, like Kano, Zaria city in Kaduna among others. It is discovered that, those consuming it could not even identify its all about except as a sweetener.
What Is Molasses
Molasses is a thick, dark, brownish juice extracted from raw sugarcane during a refining process. It is a by-product from crushed sugar cane/belts which is boiled to form crystals. During this process, the liquid is removed from the solidified crystals.
Aside using sugarcane, it can also be made from citrus (oranges), dates and cereals but the commonest is the one derived from sugarcane due to its cheapness, availability and countless health benefits.
This super sweetener varies in texture, colour, flavour and sweetness. In most developed countries, molasses is bottled in liquid form while those available here are molded solid cup-like or trayed pattern.
Types Of Molasses
– Light Molasses: This is obtained from the first phase of the extraction process as soon as the initial boiling is done. It is light brown, fresh and attractive; the sweetest of all.
– Dark Molasses: After the first boiling, the residues are reboiled to extract another set of molasses. The result obtained in this wise always appear thicker, darker and less surgery, but with more colour and flavour.
– Black Strap: This is the last phase of the extraction process where the products (leftovers) are boiled over to give the thickest darkest but butter taste. Funny enough, it is concentrated with most minerals and vitamins but not readily available in the market like the aforementioned types.
Despite its most health benefits, it is not always cherished as it is in contrast with what people really need; “sweetness”. It has also been confirmed it contains more antioxidants than honey and other sweeteners making it to reduce stress associated with cancer and other likely diseases.
Irrespective of the types, molasses is loaded with vitamin B6, Copper, Iron, Calcium, Magnesium, Potassium, Manganese and Selenium. This leads to examining its benefits.
Benefits Of Molasses
– Due to Tue presence of Iron, the formation of red blood cell is enhanced thereby accelerating the building and circulation of blood in the body system.
– Calcium aids bone firmness and strength.
– Potassium availability improves heart health, which put in control stroke and other related diseases.
– It is a good immune booster as it makes body systems function at their best against every intruder.
– Regardless of the sweetness, it enhance blood sugar stability making it recommendable for the diabetes in contrast with the chemicalized sugar produces.
– Every food that enhances blood production and flow is highly good for improved sexual health. Therefore, molasses promotes sexual agility and performance in both sexes.
– Other benefits are; prevention of greying hair, weight management, acne treatment among others.
Uses Of Molasses
– Culinary: It is a flavouring agent in pies, bread, and other pastries. Pap, tea, custard, ‘kunu’ are best taken with molasses instead of the white sugar, aspartame or other related killer sweeteners.
– Medicine: It I’d applied in pharmaceutical industries in production of drugs at times to reduce bitterness and promote health values in the other way round.
– Industrial: Some breweries make use of molasses imn their production processes e.g stouts.
Note: Much of sweet foods are not healthy for the body as it hampers cognitive process amidst other harmfulness in the body system. It is therefore recommended that molasses should be consumed in moderation.