The carob tree, scientific name Ceratonia siliqua, has fruit that looks like a dark brown pea pod, which carries pulp and seeds.
Carob is a sweet and healthy substitute for chocolate. Using it for health benefits goes back for many years.
The carob tree is now grown all over the world, from India to Australia.
Each carob tree is single-sex, so it takes a male and female tree to produce carob pods.
A single male tree can pollinate up to 20 female trees. After six or seven years, a carob tree can produce the seeds.
Carob powder, also called carob flour, is a cocoa powder alternative made from dried, roasted carob tree pods.
It looks like cocoa powder and is, often used as a natural sweetener in baked goods. It is sweet and has a unique taste.
Naturally, low-fat Carob powder contains virtually no fat.
If you’re on a low-fat diet, carob powder is a good option.
However, it is higher in sugar and carbs than cocoa powder.
Carob powder is high in fibre two tablespoons of carob powder have almost 5 grams of fibre, over 20 per cent of the RDA.
Fibre helps you stay fuller longer, eat less, prevent constipation, maintain healthy bowels, control your blood sugar and lower your cholesterol. It can also help to relieve diarrhoea.
It is important to note that Carob has twice the amount of calcium compared to cocoa is free of a migraine-triggering compound and is caffeine- and fat-free.