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Use Mesquite Flour to Prevent Diabetes

Updated on January 27, 2013

Centuries Old Mesquite Flour

When we think of mesquite we tend to think of barbeques and the mesquite wood that goes with it. Mesquite hardwood has been used for barbeques to add a smoky sweetness to grilled food. From that same tree comes a flour; ground from the mesquite tree is mesquite flour.

Is mesquite flour new?

While mesquite has been on the American continent for centuries, the flour is just now making its way to the baking aisles of the supermarket. This news is beneficial to Americans who fill up on white flour products because mesquite flour helps to control diabetes and may prevent it all together - as it has for hundreds of years and maybe centuries.

What makes mesquite flour so different?

Mesquite flour is known to prevent the sugar spikes that occur when eating white flour food products. The flour also stabilizes glucose levels. Its natural sugars do not require insulin for the body to make use of them. According to research, it helps maintain steady blood-sugar levels.

Mesquite flour is also digested more slowly than other flours helping you feel full longer. Compare the 4 to 6 hours it takes for mesquite flour to digest to the 1 to 2 hours it takes wheat flour to digest.

It has a natural sweetness in the pods which comes from fructose; fructose does not require insulin to be metabolized. Mesquite flour also has a slightly nutty taste with a hint of molasses. It delivers quite a bit of nutrition. It is high in dietary fiber and protein (11% - 17%), including lysine, and is a good source of calcium, iron, zinc, magnesium and potassium. It is low in fat and carbohydrates.

Where does mesquite grow?

Mesquite flour is not new to parts of the US. The tree can be found from central Texas to southeastern California and in Utah. It is also grown in desert regions throughout the world; they require little cultivation. Despite the fact that this tree provides an astounding amount of nutrition, it is considered a weed by ranchers and is regularly eradicated.

How has diabetes increased?

For many of the First People in the Southwest and Mexico, mesquite was an integral part of the daily diet. For over 2,000 years the Native people in arid regions relied on mesquite as a food to regulate blood sugar; diabetes did not exist then in these communities where the diet consisted of native plants with mesquite meal playing a major role. Now in native communities, as with the rest of the US population, diabetes is epidemic with a 70% increase in young people between the ages of 18-22.

Truly, we are what we eat.

Recommendations for use:

It is recommended that when you first try mesquite flour to use about 25% in proportion to whatever else you are preparing - as the taste is strong and you may need to get used to it. It works well with cornmeal when making cornbread, as well as with other grains as when making pancakes. It can also be used for baking cookies and cakes, and used as a breading for seafood and meats. A bit can be added to the morning smoothie or used to sprinkle over food. You'll use much less of it than regular flour - follow package directions.

Any more benefits other than to our diet?

Mesquite trees support sustainable agriculture worldwide and has sustained people of desert areas for centuries.

While, I have not found it in my local supermarket, I have found it in so-called health food stores. It can also be ordered online.

More suggested reading about diet and diabetes:

Listed below is a link to Japanese Shirataki noodles which have been shown to control diabetes, and links to other healthy eating ideas, including probiotics in Korean Kimchi.

save our native trees
save our native trees

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    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      You're welcome Peter Felker. I so appreciate you taking the time to comment and then follow up! We need information!

    • profile image

      Peter Felker 

      5 years ago

      Thanks BK creative,

      I was a good friend of Bob Becker who was on this paper. He was a USDA scientist not a bureaucrat. Then Daniel Meyer did his PhD on mesquite pods in 1984 and measured amino acids, proteins, sugars, used mesquite in taste panel tests with corn chips, and many other things. He also found only sucrose in mesquite flour. I have used high pressure liquid chromatogray (HPLC) and also only found sucrose. Since I am a partner in the major mesquite flour importation and distribution in the USA I would love to be able to say it helps diabetes but alas being a scientist first I cannot. The tragedy of science, a beautiful hypothesis slain by an ugly little fact

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      continued...citing the USDA from 1980 is probably no longer valid. Further the USDA is hardly a friend of the consumer. The USDA allows recalled beef by the millions of pounds to be cooked and put back on the market shelves. I wrote an article about this after contacting them.

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      5 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Thanks Peter Felker - I will leave your comment here for anyone who wants to do further research. Information changes constantly so it pays to always do current research.

    • profile image

      Peter Felker 

      5 years ago

      Unfortunately there are some major errors here. Becker and Grojeans work(USDA scientists) published work on sugar composition compostion of mesquite flour (Becker, B.; Grosjean, O.-K. K. A compositional study of two varieties of mesquite (Prosopis glandulosa, P. velutina.) J. Agric. Food Chem. 1980, 28, 22-25) and found there was no fructose and the sugar was mainly sucrose which is a problem for diabetics. Some marketing people continue to propagate this untruth. I am a partner in wwwdotcasademesquitecom that wants to see mesquite but only based on legitimate claims. Send me an email Peter_FelkerAThotmaildotcom and I will send you copies of papers from scientific journals to back up these claims

      Peter

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      6 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      I'm glad you shared info about whey flour - I hope we will hear from others who can respond to your comment. My cousin is happy with the mesquite flour and has controlled his diabetes for over 40 years.

    • profile image

      Twinpilot001 

      6 years ago

      Hello All- as a type 2 diabetic- im always looking for ways to have a lower blood sugar. I am now investigating various flours/ground grains- that I can use for breading various foods for cooking-as in southern foods . I love a chicken fried steak & the old white flours tear my sugars up. I have used whey flour & seems to give better results -yet im curious if anyone has also experiemented with the different type flours to reduce the sugar spikes??Thanx to all.

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      6 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Thanks so much for that information Vicki. It is still not that popular here in NYC. I have a feeling the cookies would sell well if the benefits were known.

    • profile image

      Vicki 

      6 years ago

      Our Farmer's Market in Sierra Vista, AZ has many products for sale using mesquite flower. The cookies are REALLY good.

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      7 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      That's right - mesquite and Texas go together. I wonder why we don't know more about this naturally growing tree.

      Thanks for the compliment and for writing!

    • justmesuzanne profile image

      justmesuzanne 

      7 years ago from Texas

      Wow! What great information! Of course, in Texas, where they grow wild and abundantly, we chop them down, pour gasoline on the stumps and set them on fire. That's the way we roll in my state!

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Thank you for taking a look SURMA. I hope you like and it works out for you.

    • profile image

      SURMA 

      8 years ago

      THANKx for great tips.My husband is a diabetic person.I m always looking for foods which will be beneficial for him.I'll definitly try this.

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Thanks so much Lisa Schofield. Information like this is always appreciated. I'll take a look!

    • profile image

      Lisa Schofield 

      8 years ago

      Mesquite flour can be ordered online at Amazon.com. Also for all of you health fanatics. I have a great blog created by Jamie Milks that I follow called the Urban Homestead Experiment: Changing the way we think about food. Give it a try! Great recipes, tips and information on healthy eating!

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Thanks so much Maita - It's still kind of hard to find unless you go to a specialty store. But, yes, we'll probably have to shop online for now. Always good to hear from you!

    • prettydarkhorse profile image

      prettydarkhorse 

      8 years ago from US

      hey BK, you always have good health advice, keep them coming,and I will remember this one, mesquite flour, plus it is available online so it is easy to find it too, Maita

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      8 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Mesquite flour is still hard to find here in the US and is virtually unknown, unfortunately. I'll look up Victoria Boutenko right now - thanks for commenting Greenheart!

    • Greenheart profile image

      Greenheart 

      8 years ago from Cambridge

      Thanks for this.

      I love mesquite.

      I have recently been using it and it certainly agrees with me.Maybe its the B vitamins.You are obviously very much in to health.

      Have you come across the green smoothie revolution and Victoria Boutenko?.Dark leafy vegetables are the best.

      Gavin

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      9 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      You're very welcome RTalloni! Thanks for writing - and nice to meet you!

    • RTalloni profile image

      RTalloni 

      9 years ago from the short journey

      Hey, this sounds great. I can't wait to try this flour. Thanks so much!

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      9 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Thanks for the compliment meteoboy! Glad you find the information so useful!

    • meteoboy profile image

      meteoboy 

      9 years ago from GREECE

      Great job.We aprecciate your effort to suggest us about how we can protect our health.

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      9 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      You're welcome Suzie Parker. It's so nice to meet you!

    • Suzie Parker profile image

      Suzie Parker 

      9 years ago

      Very interesting hub,thanks!

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      9 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      This is new to me too June G. Although I no longer bake much, I may try this flour. It is still kind of expensive in the health food stores. But it sounds good in a smoothie.

    • profile image

      June G 

      9 years ago

      This is new to me. What is old is new again. Maybe we will learn one day that we had all the good food for good health that we needed. How sad that industries contol our food with the only thought to profit, good health was never a thought.

      Good article!

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      9 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      You're welcome Lgali. Hope it proves useful!

    • Lgali profile image

      Lgali 

      9 years ago

      very nice hub thanks

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      9 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      Thanks ratnaveera!

      - with diabetes being epidemic here in the US - people are finally taking control of their health. And surprise - we are realizing that real food (not the processed garbage that fills our supermarkets) is the key to health and longevity.

      I think people will give this flour a try as we are conditioned to eat flour products: lots of breads, cakes, muffins, pasta, etc.

    • ratnaveera profile image

      ratnaveera 

      9 years ago from Cumbum

      Very interesting Hub! This may be useful for diabetics who want to have alternative sweetners.

    • BkCreative profile imageAUTHOR

      BkCreative 

      9 years ago from Brooklyn, New York City

      What's so old is now brand new.

      These trees have been on the countinent for centuries - but we only know the wood. Yet, there was a time people ate according to what grew in their environment and it sustained them. We no longer eat that way. We eat whatever is marketed, often from the factory or soil of another country. And we continue to get sicker and sicker.

      I'm so glad we have the internet to share information. Truly, we have to look out for our own health.

      Hope this information is useful to your mother and brother.

    • profile image

      gwennies pen 

      9 years ago

      Good to know, although I never heard of this kind of flour before. Both my Mom and brother are diabetic. Great tip to share! Thanks!

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