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Baby, brown sugar's best

Brown sugar is made from cane juice with minimal processing, like simple condensation. It retains vitamins, amino acids, carbohydrates and micro-elements like iron, zinc, manganese, and chromium.

Given the small amounts consumed, the mineral content is insignificant, except in TCM, which holds that brown sugar is a "warm" (yang energy) food that helps reinforce energy by "warming" the body. It reinforces energy and blood, benefits the spleen, warms the stomach, dispels pathogenic wind and cold (too much yin/cold energy), activates blood circulation and combats blood stagnation.

It is especially recommended for women with menstrual problems, those who have just given birth, children with poor appetites, and those who are weak and elderly.

Warm brown sugar soup (just sugar and water) is more easily absorbed than raw sugar.

Because it reinforces and activates blood, it is recommended for women during their periods and during yue zi, the postpartum period.

It smooths the flow of menstrual blood and relieves cramps. After a period, drinking a cup of thin brown sugar soup before lunch daily can help make up for blood loss and relieve associated fatigue.

A cup of dark sugar soup before dinner can relieve serious discomfort.

After giving birth, drinking thick brown sugar soup for 7 to 10 days can help make up for lost energy and blood and aid in recovery.

TCM says new mothers often suffer from stagnation of blood and energy, causing belly pain. Brown sugar soup with herbs can help. It also helps the uterus contract and promotes milk production.

Cooked with other foods, brown sugar has different benefits.

Combined with white fungus, wolfberry (gouqi) or jujube, it reinforces yin energy and acts as a diuretic. Adding longan and ginger can strengthen its energy and blood-reinforcing function.


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