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Nicky Rapley Feb 2021

The Many Benefits of Boabab

The Many Benefits of Boabab

Because not only does baobab super charge the nutrient value of your breakfast, and tastes delicious, it ALSO supports a growing third world business community and the future of the environment…Read on to find out more… 

Where is baobab from?

There are 9 species of baobab fruit tree found in Madagascar, North West Australia and indigenous to many parts of southern Africa and Senegal. We’re focusing here on the African variety (Adansonia digitata L) , also known as the ‘Tree of Life’, from which local communities have utilised the leaves, pulp and seeds as a source of food and health remedies for generations. However more recently and just as importantly, the fruits of the baobab tree are being used for income generation. 

What are the health benefits of Baobab?

Baobab fruit pulp and seeds contain protein, high fibre, as well as significant amounts of essential minerals such as potassium, calcium, magnesium, sodium, phosphorus, manganese and iron.

The fruit pulp is outstanding in antioxidant levels due to its Vitamin C and polyphenol content.

Er? Polyphenols?

Polyphenols are a category of plant compounds, with over 8,000 being so far discovered! Many medical studies support the role of polyphenols against the development of chronic diseases, with substantial evidence emerging in preventing cardiovascular and neurodegenerative diseases.

This is thought to be due to the behaviour of polyphenols, reducing the activity of oxidative stress, the main driver of inflammation, which leads to many chronic diseases.
Metabolic disorder studies show the effectiveness of polyphenols in managing blood sugar levels to help reduce the risk of Type 2 Diabetes. We use baobab fruit powder rich in polyphenols.

Together with the highly dense anti-oxidant and mineral content, baobab has many nutritional benefits and is definitely good for you and your immune system. 

What does Baobab taste like and what's the best way to have it?

Baobab fruit's slightly tart and refreshing taste acts as a flavour enhancer – think sweet and yummy. This combined with its high pectin content, gives it a thick and creamy feel, making it an ideal addition to yoghurt. Perfect for a nutrient dense breakfast to give you a kick start to the day. 

Why is Baobab called the ‘Tree of Life’? 

With a trunk circumference that can reach 18 meters and a height of 27 metres, this tree looks bizarre! But it can store up to 5,500 litres of water in its trunk to survive the hot, arid climate of Africa. The trees help elephants survive, as they often strip the baobab’s bark in an effort to retrieve the moist wood. The tree has a lifespan of over 500 years, being a spiritual symbol in Senegalese and southern African cultures for generations. This spiritual connection has been increased recently and being known as the ‘Tree of Life’ has become apparent to the local communities.

Showing making procedure is a good way to guarantee product quality

New Ways of Living

Harvesting and milling of the fruit pulp is a simple process, one which can be done by hand. Together with the health benefits of the fruit, potential was seen in supporting the local communities in creating and selling baobab products. Baobab has become a substantial business, with one distributer alone employing more than 1,000 collectors and processing-plant workers in Senegal for each harvest season. They produce nearly 200 tons of raw baobab materials for dietary and cosmetic use each season.

This local business growth is also having a positive impact on the lives of indigenous women. By producing jam, juice and wine from the harvested fruit and selling it locally, these women are now financially independent from their husbands.

Now free to choose to use the money for better food and health care for their families, or to send their children to school with fresh uniforms. “It empowers women to make decisions they weren’t able to make before,” says Lucy Welford of PhytoTrade.

The environment is benefitting too, as the profit potential in baobab - worth up to $1 billion a year for African producers, bringing jobs to 2.5 million households across the baobab-producing countries- means that woodlands are being preserved instead of being destroyed for fuel and farming space. Surely these incredible life sus

Baobab? I’m in!

So next time you eat baobab you can think not only of the highly nutritious superfruit packed full of vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, but also be aware of the African local communities you’re supporting!  

What's the Best Way to Take Baobab? are many ways to add baobab into your daily diet:Bake it in brownies, sprinkle it onto fruit or yoghurt, shake it into water or blend it into smoothies.But we've made getting your daily dose of Baobab even quicker and easier...

Our Cinnamon Swirl Smoothie Bowl Mix allows you to enjoy delicious food with baobab in it for breakfast. To use simply mix half to one sachet with your favourite yogurt and get creative topping with your favourite, fruits, nuts, seeds or whatever you fancy!

Written by Nicky Rapley Dip NT, MBANT, CNHC 

1. Nutritional variation in baobab (Adansonia digitata L.) fruit pulp and seeds based on Africa geographical regions
2. Polyphenols: food sources and bioavailabilityThe Tree of Life
3. The role of polyphenols in modern nutrition
4. Metaphysical Analysis of the Nutritional and Therapeutic Value of Baobab
5. Oxidative Stress and Inflammation: What Polyphenols Can Do for Us?
6. Scientific Substantiation of the Health Benefits of Baobab Fruit Powder

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