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Blackstrap Molasses

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The old saying “slow as molasses” came about because of the thick and viscous texture of molasses. Blackstrap molasses is a supplementary food from the sugar cane plant. In the processing of cane sugar, blackstrap molasses is the byproduct after the sugar crystals have been removed. The three types of molasses: light, dark, and black strap depending on the number of times it has been boiled, or concentrated. 

Light molasses occurs after the first boiling of the sugar cane, and it has the highest sugar content. Dark molasses results after the second boiling, and blackstrap molasses occurs after the third boiling. Blackstrap molasses exhibits a bitter sweet taste and is very dark in color. Even so, blackstrap molasses is a nutrient dense food ingredient.

Nutrient Composition

Blackstrap molasses is a rich source of calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium and B vitamins.

Nutrient Composition in 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses

Nutrient

Amount in mg

Potassium

450

Calcium

100

Magnesium

100

Iron

3.6

Niacin

0.075

Vitamin B6

0.05

Who Will Get the Most Benefit?

Because blackstrap molasses is a nutrient dense ingredient, it will benefit anyone. Those who would blackstrap_molasses-supporting_image-400x500.jpgbenefit the most from dietary intakes of blackstrap molasses include:

Pregnant Women

During pregnancy iron needs increase because of the expansion of the blood volume for the blood supply of the baby. One tablespoon of blackstrap molasses contains 3 mg of iron and can help meet needs.

Bone Health

Because blackstrap molasses is nutrient dense in calcium and magnesium, it supports the maintenance of the bones.

Diabetes

Compared to other sugars, blackstrap molasses has a GI index of 55, which is low to moderate GI index. Thus it can be used as an alternate sugar to help control blood sugar for people with diabetes (1). 

Ways to Use Blackstrap Molasses

Because of the bittersweet taste, blackstrap molasses is often combined with other items. Many people refrigerate it and take it for the spoonful. If the taste is unbearable, try diluting 1 tablespoon in warm water or milk. Since blackstrap molasses has a similar consistency as maple syrup, many people use it as a substitute for syrup. Blackstrap molasses can also be used as a substitute for jelly on toast or added to milkshakes and smoothies. Additionally, blackstrap molasses can be used in baked goods such as muffins, cookies, and caked.


References

1. Kadey M. blackstrap molasses. Vegetarian Times; Oak Park. 2011;(389):30-31.

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