The thought of unsulfured blackstrap molasses brings back memories of childhood. I was always small for my age and one year (I don't remember exactly how old I was), my mum decided to supplement my diet with it...
It wasn't very long before that supplementation experiment soon came to an end though. What went wrong? I wasn't a very compliant participant. The taste was horrible! Much too bitter and unpalatable for my sweet tooth!
Now add on some years and fast forward to me as an adult....
I love the stuff!!! Yes, even straight out of the spoon.
After trying it again, I've realized that my original dislike for blackstrap molasses probably had more to do with the quality of the brand (or lack thereof) than anything else. Whoever said that not all brands are created equal was right!
Quality organic brands taste sooo much better. They don't leave that terrible bitter aftertaste behind. But more on that later...
Just as a sidenote: If you're not familiar with what molasses is, it's the dark, syrupy liquid that remains when sugar cane is made into white sugar.
It's not just a fat-free sweetener. It's super concentrated with all the vitamins and minerals that get left behind in the sugar making process. That's why it makes such a great nutritional supplement.
But don't get it confused for ligher grades of molasses on the market. They may be much sweeter than blackstrap molasses, but they don't even come close when it comes to vitamin and mineral content.
Let's have a look and see...
Pretty impressive, isn't it?
Arthritis - I've read that supplementing with blackstrap molasses can help to relieve your stiff joints. This probably due to the high calcium content.
Anemia - If you're experiencing the chronic fatigue of iron-deficiency anemia, it can perk up up and help you feel energized again.
Grey hair - Rumor has it that taking molasses often enough can help your grey hairs return to their original color. I don't have the scientific studies to prove it, but some readers have written to say it works
If you've gotten results, please share your story with the rest of us!
Unsulfured organic blackstrap molasses wins hands down!
Sulfur is an unhealthy chemical additive that's used as a preservative. Some people have sulfur sensitivities, so it's best to avoid it. There are many unsulfured brands on the market now, so that shouldn't be a problem.
While you're scanning the label to make sure your molasses is unsulfured, make sure it's organic too. Going organic is super important. Here's why...
Organic cane is more likely grown in more mineral rich soil than non-organic cane. As a result, it will probably be higher in nutrients.
Unlike organic cane, non-organic cane may be treated with chemical sprays and fertilizers.
And as if that's not bad enough, word has it that sugar cane harvesters of non-organic sugar cane may use additional chemicals to make the sugar cane leaves fall off. Using those chemicals makes the sugar cane much easier to harvest, but there's a good chance some of the chemical residues can end up in your molasses! We don't need that!
One brand that I have discovered a few years back is Wholesome Sweeteners Organic Blackstrap Molasses. It doesn't contain any sulfur and has a really nice flavor. It's a 100 times better than that horrid stuff my mom tried to feed me way back when. :-)
If you are like me and like the slightly bitter taste of blackstrap molasses, go ahead and eat it right out of the spoon! :-)
Too radical for you? No worries. Just try...
Like anything else that is good for you, moderation is the key!
Keep in mind that molasses does contain a fair amount of sugar. You definitely do not want to overdo it. Between 1 and 3 tablespoons a day should be okay for most people.
If you've got diabetes or are on any kind of sugar restriction, be sure to check with your health care practitioner before adding extra sweeteners to your diet.
Try adding a wide variety of iron rich foods (e.g. lentils, organic dried apricots, prunes, etc.) to your diet. Don't just rely on just one food item to meet your needs. Variety is key!
So how long will molasses last? Unopened containers of molasses should last 2 years or longer.
Once it's opened, you can help it to maintain it's freshness by making sure the bottle is always tightly sealed. Keep it in the fridge, or in a nice dry place such as your pantry.