For people who come from eastern Indonesia, they must be familiar with sago. Sago is a staple food for most of the people of eastern Indonesia. Food ingredients derived from the trunk of the sago tree are extracted to produce a powder which will then be used as staple food. In addition to the staple food of the people of eastern Indonesia, sago is also commonly processed into noodles or pearls. The shape of sago after processing is almost similar to processed tapioca flour. Namely it has a soft, sticky and slightly clear texture. Although sago is only abundant in eastern Indonesia, and still rare in western Indonesia, sago has many benefits that are useful for health because it has good nutritional content.
Nutrient Content Found In Sago
Almost like rice, processed sago flour has a very high carbohydrate content. But the difference is, sago flour only has low nutritional content, calories, protein, calcium, iron, fiber, fat, carotene, carbonic acid and also thiamin which is in sago is lower than rice. Although it has lower nutrients than rice, the nutritional content in sago can compensate for other foods that have higher protein and vitamin content. In addition, although the nutrients in sago are lower, sago also has many benefits that are good for health.
Benefits of Sago for Health
The nutritional content of sago is indeed lower than rice, but the benefits obtained when consuming sago and using it for health are not inferior to rice. Some of the benefits that can be obtained from consuming and utilizing sago for health include:
- Conditioning Blood Sugar Levels
Sago has a content of fiber and phosphorus minerals that can inhibit the rate of increase in glucose levels found in blood sugar. The fiber in sago is able to inhibit the accumulation of glucose that occurs in the blood so that glucose can not form crystals that can stimulate the rise of sugar levels in the blood. Blood sugar levels are also able to be bound and suppressed by the content contained in sago so that it does not directly spread throughout the body. With that function, by consuming sago can stabilize blood sugar levels so that there is no increase in blood sugar levels that can lead to diabetes.
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- Works As A Prebiotic
Sago contains fiber, where the fiber contained in sago has a function as a prebiotic. Prebiotics themselves are the resulting ability to protect the condition of the micro flora in the gut. By protecting the micro flora in the intestines, the intestines can avoid the dangers of harmful bacteria that often attack the intestines. Fiber is also able to help stabilize enzymes in digestion so that they can carry out their functions properly. When the digestive tract is healthy and free from harmful bacteria, the body’s immunity can indirectly increase. This is because a healthy digestive tract can prevent inflammation and infection in the digestive tract and can accelerate wound healing in the digestive tract.
Sago also has resistance to enzymes and microbes. In contrast to other foods, sago starch cannot be digested by the small intestine, but will be fermented by bacteria in the colon so that people who consume sago can reduce the risk of colon cancer.
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- Lose weight
Sago has less sugar content than other foodstuffs such as rice, corn and wheat. The low sugar content of sago can have great benefits for people with diabetes. Although the sugar content in sago is low, the carbohydrates in sago are higher than rice, so consuming sago for a diet is not dangerous. This is because the energy obtained from consuming sago remains sufficient. In addition, the content in sago in the form of mineral phosphorus and fiber can suppress hunger longer than eating rice.
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- Maintain Bone Health
Sago is a type of flour that has a source of calcium and is rich in phosphorus content in it. In accordance with its benefits, the calcium contained in sago flour can keep bones from getting osteoporosis. Calcium in sago can maintain bone strength and maintain calcium density in bones, joints and teeth. The phosphorus contained in sago controls and binds the structure of bones and teeth so that they remain solid and avoid pain, bone fractures and aches. Sago also not only overcomes but also prevents early bone damage. Children who consume sago can have healthy bones and quickly grow tall. Sago can accelerate the formation, growth and compaction of calcium in bones, so it is very good for bones during growth.
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- Overcoming Skin and Hair Problems
In addition to overcoming health problems, sago can also be used to maintain the beauty of both skin and hair. The content in sago can nourish the skin and hair.
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6. Overcome Irritation.
Sago can overcome irritation that occurs on the skin caused by several things, namely allergic irritation, sunburn and other skin problems. By using sago that has been mixed with water, then smeared on irritated skin, skin problems can be overcome.
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7. Smoothing the Face.
Like rice flour and starch, using sago flour for a mask can smooth facial skin. Using a sago flour mask 2 times a week, the skin will be smoother, so it can add beauty and increase self-confidence.
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8. Dry Shampoo.
When you don’t have time to wash your hair, you can maintain the appearance of your hair by using sago as a dry shampoo. By mixing sago flour and a little baking soda, then sprinkling it on the hair, the hair will look clean. Baking soda and sago can remove oil on the scalp and hair, so hair becomes softer and does not look limp and dull.
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Sago is only recently known by some people in West Indonesia and has not been used because sago grows well in eastern Indonesia. Even so, the benefits of sago at other times can also be used by all regions in Indonesia because it has many health benefits.