By Lawal Dahiru Mamman
Different food items offer an array of nutrients from the six classes of food. The only fact is that a particular food item may be dominant in a nutrient rendering all others negligible. For example, rice is mostly known to contain carbohydrate (sugar or energy), but in reality, contains some levels of protein, fats and even some B vitamins found in brown rice.
That being said, an old tradition still with high relevance in this contemporary time is a myth – a concoction of malt drink and milk is a good blood-booster.
When recuperating from illness, people are advised to take a mixture of malt and milk because it replenishes dead blood cells that fight the foreign microorganism during the illness.
The blood contains plasma – for transport of digested food, platelets – prevent and stop bleeding, red blood cells – transport oxygen to other body parts from the lungs and white blood cells – fight diseases and other infections. For the synthesis of blood by the body, the most important nutrient is ‘Iron’. Therefore, for any food material to be considered a blood booster, it must contain a substantial amount of iron – a mechanism left for experts to discuss.
The nutritional content of both malt and milk is labelled on the products. Malt contains carbohydrates, protein, vitamins and water, while milk contains fats, carbohydrates, cholesterol, vitamins, calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. The noteworthy thing is that neither commodity has iron – a major mineral that must be contained in any food before it can be classified as a blood booster. With this, it can be deduced that there is no scientific evidence to prove this old assumption right.
Individually, malt grain contains fibre, potassium, folate, and vitamin B6, which together lower cholesterol and decrease the risk of cardiac disease. Its dietary fibre helps reduce insulin activity, increases cholesterol absorption from the gut, and encourages cholesterol breakdown. Milk is a significant source of protein, vitamin D, vitamin A, calcium, and other essential nutrients.
Many experts associate dairy diets with a lower risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and high blood pressure. In addition, the nutrient profile of milk supports bone health.
Though the concoction is sumptuous and appealing to the palates, it has no base in the scientific realm regarding boosting blood.
Lawal Dahiru Mamman, a corps member, writes from Abuja and can be reached via firstname.lastname@example.org.