8 Health Benefits Of Blackstrap Molasses & How To Take It

Reduce frizz and prevent premature graying with this natural sweetener.

Medically reviewed by Julie Freeman, RDN, LDN, RYT
Written by Ravi Teja Tadimalla, BSc, Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health
Edited by Arshiya Syeda, BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Dip
Fact-checked by Sindhu Koganti, BTech (Biotechnology), Certified Health & Nutrition Life Coach  • 

Blackstrap molasses are a byproduct of sugar cane refining. Though they contain sugar, the benefits of blackstrap molasses are many. Their benefits primarily depend on the extraction methods followed and the age of the plant.

This article discusses what you need to know about blackstrap molasses and the health benefits it offers. Consuming it regularly may even aid in the treatment of certain health ailments. Continue reading to know more.

protip_icon Know Your Ingredient: Blackstrap Molasses

What Is It?
A thick brown liquid obtained during sugar production containing beneficial nutrients.

What Are Its Benefits?
It contains vitamins and minerals and can prevent anemia and stabilize blood sugar levels.

Who Can Use It?
Anyone can use it as a sweetener except for people with high potassium and phosphorus levels.

How Often?
It can be used daily in place of a sweetener.

Caution
Excess consumption can result in diarrhea and blood sugar spikes.

What Is Blackstrap Molasses Called In Different Indian Languages

India is home to a large number of naturally available remedies, and blackstrap molasses is one of those.

Yes, we know India is a home to a large number of naturally available remedies. And blackstrap molasses is one of those. This is what it is called in a few Indian languages:

  • In Hindi – Sheera
  • In Tamil – Vellappaaku
  • In Malayalam – Karimbin paavu
protip_icon Trivia
The process of making molasses originated in India back in around 500 BCE. It was then introduced to Spain, the West Indies, and England.

Blackstrap Molasses Benefits

1.Good For The Hair

Image: Shutterstock

Of course, you are what your hair looks like, right? At least most of the times.

A single serving of blackstrap molasses has about 14 percent of your RDI of copper, an important mineral that contributes to healthy hair. Prolonged consumption of blackstrap molasses can also improve hair quality. Replacing the sugar in your diet with blackstrap molasses can also go a long way in improving your hair health (1).

Blackstrap molasses can also be beneficial in removing hair frizz.

Since it is a rich source of antioxidants, blackstrap molasses fights free radical activity, thereby reducing gray hair and preventing hair loss.

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, blackstrap molasses is a good source of calcium that can treat hair loss caused by hyperparathyroidismi  XWhen parathyroid glands are overactive and produce excessive parathyroid in blood, causing bone thinning and kidney stones. (2).

Iron is another nutrient that is key for hair growth, and according to the Oregon State University, blackstrap molasses is a good source of non-heme ironi  XIron sources from plant foods like nuts, seeds, whole grains, legumes and leafy green vegetables. (3).

2. Can Help Treat Anemia

According to the University of Maryland Medical Center, blackstrap molasses is a very good source of non-heme iron that may help in the treatment of anemia (4).

As per a report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics, blackstrap molasses is a good source of iron that can help prevent iron-deficiency anemia in infants and young children (5).

Irina, a vlogger, talked about the benefits of blackstrap molasses while highlighting their making process, and how its benefits. She said, “Blackstrap molasses is extremely high in iron so that’s actually the main reason why I am taking it and I’m giving it to my small son (i).”

Blackstrap molasses, in addition to other B vitamins, also contains folate – all of which promote the production of red blood cells. This can also treat megaloblastic anemiai  XA blood disorder when the bone marrow makes stem cells that produce abnormally large red blood cells. .

3. Can Aid In The Treatment And Prevention Of Cancer

Cancer patient may benefit from blackstrap molasses
Image: Shutterstock

According to an American study, blackstrap molasses was found to be effective in the treatment of diseases like cancer (6). It is rich in minerals like iron, zinc, magnesium, potassium, and other B complex vitamins, the deficiencies of which can pose a serious cancer risk.

In another American study, blackstrap molasses was found to have a higher level of antioxidants, which could be beneficial in the treatment of cancer (7).

According to a report published by the Harvard Medical School, intake of calcium is associated with a reduced risk of colorectal canceri  XA rectum cancer in which the cells in the colon or rectum grow excessively and disrupt normal bodily function. . Blackstrap molasses, being a good source of calcium, can play a role in this regard (8). Along with cancer prevention, it also has an anti-tumor effect (9).

Caution

Though the evidence is not clear, preliminary research suggests that there could be an association between iron and cancer (especially breast cancer). Hence, consuming blackstrap molasses (it being a good source of iron) with regard to cancer must be considered only after consulting your doctor (10). It is worthwhile to request a lab panel including iron, Hgb, Hct, ferritini  XA blood protein containing iron. Ferritin tests are taken by the doctors to determine the level of iron in the blood of a patient. , and TIBC. These values can help in deciding if additional iron is warranted.

4. Beneficial For The Skin

Blackstrap molasses is found to contain lactic acid, which can play the role of a natural acne treatment. The consumption of blackstrap molasses also accelerated the healing time of wounds – this ultimately helps your skin become fresh and clear.

According to the University of Illinois, deficiency of iron cause the skin to become pale and damages its health – something that can be countered by including blackstrap molasses in the diet (11).

The molasses can also act as a wonderful skin softener (12).

protip_icon Fun Fact

The word ‘molasses’ comes from the Portuguese melaço, derived from the Latin word mel which means ‘honey.’

5. Good Source Of Iron For Pregnant Women

Image: Shutterstock

Just two tablespoons of blackstrap molasses contain about 13.2 percent of our RDA of iron, which is required by our bodies to carry oxygen to the blood cells. This is a great benefit for pregnant women. Also, many women have low iron levels during pregnancy, thus increasing the risk for preterm delivery or low birthweight.

According to the Harvard School of Public Health, daily intake of iron reduces the risk of low birth weight (13). More research throws light on how important iron is for pregnant women, as the nutrient is supplied to the growing fetus and placenta, and is also beneficial in increasing the maternal red blood cell mass (14).

Calcium is also another important nutrient necessary for pregnant women , and here is when blackstrap molasses can be beneficial as it is rich in calcium (15), (16). This may also help to reduce leg cramps, which are common during pregnancy.

6. Can Ease Menstrual Pain

Blackstrap molasses has certain nutrients that can help reduce muscle cramps. These include iron, calcium, magnesium, potassium, manganese, and vitamin B6. Since the uterus is also a muscle, these nutrients can help reduce menstrual cramps.

Since blackstrap molasses, as already discussed, is rich in iron, it also helps women replenish iron levels, which otherwise go down due to blood loss.

7. Can Promote Bone Health

Blackstrap molasses contains many nutrients to keep bones healthy and strong. These nutrients include calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and magnesium. By maintaining a recommended daily quota of these minerals, you can lower the risk of osteoporosisi  XA condition in which bones become so weak and brittle that a mild stress or even a simple cough can lead to a fracture. as well as other bone diseases.

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, blackstrap molasses is a good source of copper, which can be beneficial to the bones (17).

8.Cardiovascular Protection

Image: Shutterstock

Many of the vitamins and minerals that blackstrap molasses contains are required to maintain a healthy heart and reduce the risk of strokes, heart attacks, and cardiovascular diseases. These heart-protecting nutrients include Vitamin B6, calcium, magnesium, potassium, and manganese. Together, they have the ability to fight oxidative stress, treat blood clots, lower blood pressure, and prevent inflammation of the cardiovascular system.

As already discussed, blackstrap molasses is rich in copper that has been found to contribute to a healthy heart (18).

How To Take Blackstrap Molasses

Blackstrap molasses in a bowl
Image: IStock

If you want to take blackstrap molasses as a supplement, the best way to do so is by mixing one to two tablespoons in a cup of hot water. Be sure to brush teeth afterwards due to the sugar content, which can damage teeth. You should drink this supplement first thing in the morning because that is when your body requires energy the most. There are people who drink this mix three times daily as a remedy for severely poor health conditions.

You can incorporate blackstrap molasses in a wide variety of foods as a sweetener. You can use it as a substitute for sugar in your tea and even in hot cereals. It goes every well with waffles and pancakes. You can use it as a glaze, and even add it to your desserts!

Maintaining or restoring your health with the help of natural whole foods will need a sustained intake over time. However, you will find that the effort is worth it as you save money by not buying medications and supplements, while gaining numerous health benefits without having to worry about any side effects. One word of caution – molasses is a sugar, and all sugars need to be limited in the diet. Consider a serving of two tablespoons per day to be adequate, unless treating significant illness, as noted above.

Wondering how to consume blackstrap molasses? Check out the next section for some lip-smacking recipes.

Blackstrap Molasses Recipes

Blackstrap Molasses Cookies

Ingredients

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ cup molasses

How To Prepare

  1. Add butter and sugar to a bowl and whisk well.
  2. Add egg and molasses to it.
  3. Sieve all the dry ingredients into the mixture and combine.
  4. Refrigerate it for an hour.
  5. Divide the dough into small balls and bake for 11 minutes.

Blackstrap Molasses Iced Tea

Ingredients

  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon black tea
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 6-8 ice cubes

How To Prepare

  1. Pour milk and tea into a pot and let it simmer for 2-3 minutes.
  2. Sieve and transfer it to a blender along with molasses and ice.
  3. Blend and serve!

Infographic: All About Blackstrap Molasses

Blackstrap molasses is a natural sweetener that is packed with essential minerals and beneficial bioactive compounds. It has an edge over its regular counterpart and can help address many problems.

Check out the infographic below for additional information about blackstrap molasses, its nutritional value, how to prepare it at home, and how to use it to rejuvenate your skin.

all about blackstrap molasses (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Save the high-quality PDF version on your device now.

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Download Infographic in PDF version

The benefits of blackstrap molasses are varied and plentiful. They are packed with potent antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals that promote overall health. Blackstrap molasses may help promote heart health, skin health, hair health, and bone health to some extent. They are also good for maintaining your blood sugar and providing stress relief. In addition, they may help ease menstrual cramps, promote circulation as well as treat constipation and other digestion-related issues. You can reap the benefits of blackstrap molasses by consuming them as a dietary supplement or sugar substitute. However, excessive consumption can cause health issues. Limit their use and seek medical advice if you experience any side effects.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is blackstrap molasses anti-inflammatory?

Blackstrap molasses is believed to have anti-inflammatory properties and is thus used to relieve arthritic pain.

Does molasses boost the immune system?

No. Molasses have immunosuppressive effects and may negatively impact the humoral immune response (adaptive immunity in the body to produce antibodies) (1).

Can molasses reverse gray hair?

No. Nothing can reverse the graying process.

Key Takeaways

  • Blackstrap molasses are a good choice for diabetes patients since it has a lower glycemic index.
  • Consuming these can improve gut health and bowel movements.
  • It is a rich source of calcium and iron, which can improve bone health, and also aids in treating anemia.

Discover amazing benefits of blackstrap molasses in this video that will make you want to get a jar right away! From improved digestion to stronger bones, this superfood has it all!

Personal Experience: Source

References

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

  1. The effect of sugar cane molasses on the immune and male reproductive systems using in vitro and in vivo methods
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5110661/
  2. Cancer: a single disease with a multitude of manifestions?
    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC305362/
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