food feature: SUGARCANE or “TUBO”

sugarcane

“Sugarcane” commonly known in the Philippines as “Tubo” is native to tropical regions of South Asia and the primary source of sugar around the world aside from sugar beets. Sugar which is extracted from its fibrous and jointed stalks and when fermented can produce ethanol which is the type of alcohol found in alcoholic beverages. Its scientific name is “Saccharum” and was among  in the species and family of tall grasses which is perennial or sturdy enough to survive while being the largest crop that grows 6 up to 19 feet tall. The global demand for sugar reinforces the sugarcane agriculture to be primarily driven into priority. The main product from sugarcane is sucrose which is an organic compound and popularly known as table sugar. Brazil was the biggest producer of sugarcane in the world followed by India, China, Thailand, Pakistan and Mexico. The Philippines is also a sugar-producing country… and sugarcane is widely grown in the islands of Luzon, Mindanao, Negros and Panay. Sugarcane crop is sensitive to the type of soil, irrigation, climate and its harvest period depending on its varieties as well as the fertilizers used in its growing stage.

SUGARCANE  JUICE

tubo

When I was a kid, we were taught to have a taste of sugarcane juice by means of chewing. The stalks were chopped for about 12 inches as the rind was then removed. Next, its internal tissues were bitten then sucked while being chewed and spitting out the pulp afterwards.  Presently, you don’t have to do it the hard way as that. it is now commercially available in malls particularly in “CARICA” stalls, wherein the juice from the sugarcane were naturally extracted with the use of sugarcane machine for cane processing and pressing then placed in a bottle for a more comfortable consumption as a plain beverage without the chewing part. Plus the fact that the said juice is free from any chemicals, artificial food color and flavoring.

sugarcane in mall

Drinking sugarcane juice have many health benefits such as an alternative remedy for sore throat and flu. It’s good for our digestive system which can prevent constipation due to its rich potassium content. It also decreases our body’s bad cholesterol which in return can refresh and energize us. To add up, it can strengthen our stomach, kidney and heart. Best of all, it can help us prevent and fight cancer because of it’s being alkaline in nature. Moreover, it hydrates our body quickly. Regular intake of its juice can naturally boost our immune system, improve our intestinal health, breaks kidney stones and prevents hypertension to name a few. Drinking  a delicious and natural sugarcane juice can give you a healthy and sweet life ahead!

Photos by: Sukito San

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sugarcane

http://www.netafim.com/article/sugarcane–philippines

http://beautyhealthtips.in/best-health-benefits-of-drinking-sugarcane-juice/

food trivia: HEALTHY GREEN TEA

Green tea originates from China and has become a part of many cultures in Asian countries. It was used against headaches and depression in Ancient China. Recently, it has been widely adopted in the West. According to a health survey conducted by the United States Department of Agriculture, green tea contains “flavonoids” which are a group of phytochemicals found in most plant products that are responsible for such health effects as anti-oxidative and anticarcinogenic functions which on the other hand varies depending on the tea product. Drinking green tea regularly can also lower chances of having heart disease together with its anti-cancer and anti-bacterial healing benefits. Aside from preventing cancer, it  also lowers “bad” cholesterol and blood sugar, stops the unnatural formation of blood cloth, reduces high blood pressure, protects liver against toxins, boosts immune system, helps your body maintain healthy fluid balance, stimulates metabolism, prevents allergic reactions, and destroys free radicals that cause aging.  Other researches show that, drinking green tea regularly may help prevent tooth decay and promotes oral health by killing the bacteria which causes the dental plaque.

Source courtesy of:

Wikipedia: Green Tea

Health Mad.com

Green Tea Secrets.com

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