KHARTOUM (Sudanow) - Al-Turmus is the local Arabic name of a crop scientifically known as lupinus termis, also known as the white lupin.
It is a flowering plant in the legume family “Fabaceae”. It is cultivated in Sudan and all over the Mediterranean region as well as many other parts of the world.
The white lupin plant is 30 to 120 cm high. Its leaves are alternate and its flowers have a variety of colors including white, yellow, purple, red, blue and pink.
The fruit is a pod containing several seeds. The seeds are soaked in water until they sweeten and then boiled and used largely in Sudan and other countries as street snack food.
It is common belief in Sudan that lupines has the potential to help broken bones heal faster.
Recent studies found that its usage as food source could be widen as it is very rich in protein, fiber, oil, B-complex vitamins and essential minerals. According to Livestrong site each cup of lupins contains:
26 grams of protein, which aids in new cell growth, supports tissue repair and maintains immune system function,
16.4 grams of carbohydrates, including 4.6 grams of fiber which maintains cardiovascular health and might also aid in weight control,
0.22 milligram of thiamin (a vitamin essential for carbohydrate and fat metabolism, as well as maintaining nervous system function),
1.12 milligrams of manganese which prevents cellular damage, and also supports healthy bone and cartilage growth,
90 milligrams of magnesium which works to maintain healthy bone density, while smaller amounts of magnesium support muscle function, contribute to healthy cell membranes,
383 micrograms of copper, or 43 percent of the recommended daily intake, which helps your body process iron, aids in the function of your spinal cord and brain, and strengthens your blood vessels.
Lupinus is also used as cosmetic. The seeds are traditionally grinded by women and used as face mask to remove acne, skin inflammations or to smoothen the skin. It is used for the same purposes by the beauty products companies.
They are also believed to reduce blood sugar.
Another use of the lupines is as an ornamental garden plant due to the rich colours of its flowers.
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