Carob, an almost unknown superfood that thrives in Crete, helps health in many ways. It has antioxidant (helps to deal with oxygen free radicals, which attack cells accelerating processes such as aging, chronic damage and diseases such as heart disease and cancer) and anti-diabetic (has a very low glycemic index).<!–more –>
It also has antiviral properties (the nutrients contained in carob strengthen the immune system and help it ward off viral diseases), anti-diarrheal properties and hypolipidemic (carob contains lignin, which helps fight ‘bad’ cholesterol [LDL]).
But what many people don’t know is that carob is a top plant-based source of calcium. Essentially, carob contains twice as much calcium as milk, as it offers us 348mg of calcium per 100g, while in comparison milk contains only 120 to 130mg of calcium per 100g. The body’s requirements for calcium are particularly high, especially during childhood and adolescence, but also during pregnancy and menopause. Calcium is an inorganic metal, very important for bone health and beyond, since it strengthens nerves, muscles and the heart. Two tablespoons of carob honey have 42 mg of calcium!
Usually, calcium deficiency in our body results in osteoporosis, due to reduced calcium intake, combined with reduced exercise and smoking. In this condition the bones wear out, become porous and take on a spongy appearance. The sufficient amount of calcium, throughout our life and especially until the age of 20-25 years (especially for women) can reduce it by up to 50%.
Carob contains calcium, but not oxalic acid. Oxalic acid tends to reduce the body’s ability to absorb calcium and zinc and is found in cocoa and chocolate. A diet high in oxalates also increases the risk of developing kidney stones. Carob powder does not contain oxalates. On the contrary, carob has a much lower caloric value than chocolate (it has 60% fewer calories) and is therefore considered its perfect substitute. In fact, precisely because of its high content of calcium and phosphorus, it is considered to contribute to the prevention of osteoporosis.
In addition, 100 g of carob contains 3.0 mg of iron, which is as much as would be included in 100 g of cooked lentils. At the same time, carob flour contains 54 mg of magnesium, a building block of bones, 0.6 mg of copper as well as vitamins of the B complex. We recommend carob honey as a natural source of calcium and magnesium intake for the treatment of osteoporosis and other calcium deficiency diseases. Of course, the treatment plan is defined by the doctor, taking into account the special characteristics of the person.
he carob is suitable for everyone! In addition to the above, it contains 40g of dietary fiber per 100g, is easily digestible, gluten-free (suitable for individuals with celiac disease), helps prevent constipation and promote smooth bowel function, and can greatly reduce symptoms of acute diarrhea. Carob contains tannins and fibrous substances like lignin, which have a stabilizing effect on cholesterol and can help reduce “bad” (LDL) cholesterol.
The glycemic index of carob is very low. It does not contain caffeine and is perfectly suitable for individuals with diabetes. In general, it has positive effects on blood glucose levels and is used in the management of diabetes and obesity. The fruit of the carob tree also contains polyphenols, antioxidant compounds that aid in cancer prevention and the management of hyperlipidemia.
LG Raisz “Osteoporosis: current approaches and future prospects in diagnosis, pathogenesis, and management”
Aline Morgado Martins “Carob: a healthy replacement to cocoa”
LMD Santos, LF Campos, LT Tulio, MR Dorneles “Glycemic response to Carob (Ceratonia siliqua L) in healthy subjects and with the in vitro hydrolysis index”