So what is Blackstrap Molasses, where does it come from and how can it feed my body?
Blackstrap Molasses, also known as Black Treacle, is a byproduct in the making of highly refined white sugar, but unlike it's naughty cousin this type of molasses is nutrient dense and has a much lower sugar content. As the image shows, Blackstrap Molasses is very dark in colour, highly viscous and has a bitter sweet flavour. In commercially produced foods it is used more for colour enhancement than for the health benefits and is often be an ingredient in baked beans, barbeque sauce and baked goods.
When using Blackstrap molasses to feed your body I would recommend buying an organic unsulphured brand such as Melrose. Readily available online, good organic supermarkets, and health food stores. Use it as a substitute for brown sugar in cooking, it is also said to go perfectly with coffee. So if you have to have sugar in your coffee, try this instead, reduce your glycemic load and increase your mineral intake at the same time!
Today I will talk about Melrose Organic Unsulphured Blackstrap Molasses as not all products are the same and may not include all these nutrients, so you need to read the labels carefully.
If you have elevated cholesterol, high blood pressure or any other heart related condition you may be low in copper. Deficiency in this mineral has also been associated with hair loss, anaemia, depression and even the early onset of grey hair and ageing. So if you want to maintain your youth and fight the signs of ageing without paying for expensive beauty products then copper may be the answer.
Whenever we think of calcium we automatically think dairy, but many of us are dairy intolerant or are simply looking for other food sources. The recommended daily allowance for an adult is 800mg a day. 100g of Blackstrap Molasses contains an amazing 420g. Combine that with some almonds and broccoli and you are all set. When we think of calcium we automatically think bone health, but did you know that low levels can contribute to anxiety, depression, back pain and brittle nails?
Every 100g has 290mg of Magnesium which is more than half the daily requirement for a male and 2/3 that of a female. Magnesium is a great muscle relaxant and is a vital cofactor in DNA repair. Deficiency has also been associated with oxidative stress, anxiety, depression, heart disease and kidney stones.
If you don't eat meat then getting your daily requirement of iron can be tricky and this is one source you might not have heard of. Anaemia is the most common condition associated with iron deficiency but it can also contribute to brittle nails, constipation, headaches, restless leg syndrome and even that frog in the throat feeling.
In this fast paced society many of us are suffering from adrenal fatigue. If you are low in potassium you are only contributing to this condition. Potassium also helps to regulate blood pressure, muscle contraction and water balance in the body. If you are deficient you may show signs of bone and joint pain, acne, hypertension, kidney damage and arthritis.
Incredibly important mineral that is a co-factor for more than 300 enzymes and proteins that are involved in defence against oxidative stress in the body. Put simply our immune system needs Zinc to fight disease and repair our body. Incredibly important for cancer patients. Deficiency leaves you more susceptible to infection, delayed wound healing, depression, hair loss and more.
While I have focused on the health benefits of Blackstrap Molasses it is important to consider that it also contains 54g of sugar and 150g of sodium for every 100g serve. Diabetics need to be particularly careful with their sugar consumption, though it is important to note that unlike refined sugar the sugar in Blackstrap Molasses has a low glycemic load which slows down the metabolism of glucose resulting in less insulin production. Sodium intake is a consideration for those with hypertension or those with a high intake of processed foods. Read all your labels and add up your daily intake to make sure you are keeping on track.
There are many benefits to all the minerals listed and there are also many conditions that can be assisted by increasing the doses of these minerals. We also have to consider that more doesn't necessarily mean better, and whilst it is important to meet your daily requirements I would recommend visiting your trusted Nutritionist before increasing any doses yourself.