What is a black strap molasses and what are the blackstrap molasses health benefits? If you want to know the answer, better read on.
Blackstrap molasses is a dark and viscous molasses that remains after thorough extraction of sugar from sugar cane or beet. It is the product after boiling the sugar syrup for the third time. Some of the sucrose from the original juice has been crystallized and the remaining part serves as the caloric content of molasses.
The word molasses actually came from the Portuguese word “melaco” which originated from the word “mel”, a Latin word for honey. The quality of molasses depends on the maturity of the sugar beet or cane, amount of sugar extracted and the method used in extraction.
Molasses has many uses. It can be used to serve as a base material for fermentation into rum, additive in livestock grains, fishing groundbait, secret ingredient for dark brewed beverages like stout, as carbon source for in situ remediation of chlorinated hydrocarbons, as alternative fuel for motor vehicles in the form of ethanol, as a special ingredient in baking, and as a health supplement.
As a health supplement, blackstrap molasses provides consumers with significant amount of vitamin B6 and minerals which includes iron, calcium, copper, magnesium and potassium. One tablespoon of blackstrap molasses a day can actually provide consumers with up to 20% of the recommended daily value of each of the said nutrients.
Iron helps the body produce red blood cells which contain hemoglobin. Hemoglobin carries oxygen to the cells which helps the cells function normally. When every cell in the body functions normally, the body feels energized and filled with life. Blackstrap molasses is great for menstruating and lactating women which are at high risk of iron deficiency anemia.
Calcium plays a lot of role in the body and some of these are as follows: development of strong bones, formation of blood clots, proper heart and muscle contraction, binds to toxins in the colon which greatly decrease the incidence of colon cancer, helps in proper conduction of nerve impulses to and from the brain, and helps in the function of cell membrane.
Copper helps in the utilization of iron, development of bones and connective tissues, production of melanin which produces skin and hair pigment, and elimination of free radicals in the body. Copper deficiency can cause rupturing of blood vessels, iron deficiency anemia, elevated bad cholesterol, irregular heartbeat, and increase risk for infections.
Magnesium helps calcium in developing strong bones. Majority of magnesium in the body is found in the bones. Some magnesium in the body is found in the nerves where they act as calcium channel blockers. They prevent the entry of calcium thus causing the nerve and the blood vessels it enervate to become relaxed.
Potassium serves an important role in muscle contraction and nerve transmission. When potassium level is low, the muscles become weak and are prone for cramping episodes. Achieving normal potassium level in the body is very important for athletes thus taking blackstrap molasses daily could achieve that normal value.