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10 Amazing Health Benefits of African Locust Beans

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The locust bean is a local flavor used in soups and stews, and it is called iru in Yoruba and ogiri in Igbo. The African locust bean, whose scientific name is Parkia biglobosa, is used in soups worldwide. It doesn’t look good, and it smells, at best, awful. Aside from these, the locust bean is the most important thing you can add to soups, stews, or mixed vegetables to make them taste even better.

The African locust bean tree has also been discovered to have many benefits. The tree’s pulverized bark, for example, is used in wound healing and is one of the substances used to cure leprosy. In Cote d’Ivoire, the bark decoction is also used as a fever bath and hot mouthwashes to steam and cure toothaches. And the bean itself has many more benefits. Some of these benefits include the following:

  1. Good antioxidants: African locust beans are a good source of antioxidants, which fight free radicals and help the body clean itself. It also has a lot of antioxidants, such as phenols (catechins) and flavonoids. Antioxidants protect the body from free radicals, which cause diabetes, heart disease, and other ailments. These chemicals protect against free radicals and help keep metabolic disorders from happening.
  2. Great for pregnant women: African locust bean is rich in protein, calcium, iron, and other nutrients essential for a baby’s growth and development. Eating African locust beans (iru) during pregnancy might help prevent gestational diabetes and anemia. 
  3. Lowers blood sugar: The high antioxidant content of the African locust beans is also crucial for their anti-diabetic properties. In one study, Parkia biglobosa extracts decreased the amount of low-density lipoproteins (LDL) in animal models and lowered blood sugar. In another study, African locust bean extracts reduced insulin resistance, increased insulin production, and reduced blood sugar levels in animal models. Fermented locust beans are full of iron and other essential nutrients, so eating them can keep you from getting anemia.
  4. Prevents Anemia: Anemia is a blood disorder in which there aren’t enough red blood cells or hemoglobin. Lack of red blood cells makes you tired and pale. Fermented locust beans are full of iron and other vital nutrients, so eating them can keep you from getting anemia. One study also found that giving kids a mix of African locust beans and other native foods can help prevent anemia and poor nutrition.
  5. Good for eyes: Vitamin A is abundant in locust beans, which aids in vision development and prevents blindness. It accomplishes this by supplying antioxidants to the cornea, which aids in minimizing the likelihood of eye infections such as cataracts, dry eyes, and myopia. It also has soluble fiber, which research shows help keep sugar levels in check and lowers cholesterol levels.
  6. Filled with nutrients: Protein is abundant in fermented locust beans. The seeds have a protein content of 39%, a fat content of 27%, and a carbohydrate content of 16%. Calcium, potassium, iron, phosphorus, manganese, copper, and B-vitamins like thiamine are abundant in bean seeds. It’s a fantastic source of nutrients for everyone and an excellent alternative to animal protein.
  7. Low cholesterol: Cholesterol can cause blockages in blood arteries and cause cardiac problems. Consuming locust beans can aid in the regulation of cholesterol levels in our bodies.
  8. Balances blood pressure: The beneficial effects of fermented locust beans on blood pressure are their high antioxidant content. The seeds of African locust beans are high in catechins, a form of phenol. Studies have shown that these chemicals reduce oxidative stress and make blood vessels more comprehensive, causing blood pressure to go down.
  9. Treats diarrhea: Tannins can be found in locust beans. Tannins are a type of polyphenol that can be found in tea, red wine, chocolate, coffee, and some fruits. Some tannins are polyphenols, whereas others are antioxidants. They protect humans from heart disease and cavities by fighting cavities. Consider preparing food with locust beans the next time you’re suffering from diarrhea.
  10. Suitable for the skin: People who suffer from skin infections can infuse, soak, and bathe with the root, bark, and leaves of African locust beans. It could also be used to treat burns on the skin.

Conclusion

Locust beans are used in a variety of dishes because they taste excellent and can be a more flavorful option than other seasoning cubes and because of their health benefits, which include improved vision, digestion, and much more. They can serve as great additions to all kinds of dishes. If you have been using locust beans in your meals, let us know your recommendations on recipes to try out. 

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