Ponmo Health Benefits | Amazing Health Benefits Of Ponmo You Should KnowFebruary 5, 2019
Ponmo Health Benefits: Cow Skin Nutritional Information
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After going through a lot of reports about cow skin and its usage in Nigeria, I was left with no other choice than to bring my own opinion to the open as a result of my findings.
Ponmo is derived from cow skin, it is a common source of meat for most Nigerians, as a matter of fact, it is one of the most consumed organ meat. It is preferred by many because of its unique taste and affordability.
It is quite surprising the massive campaign against consumption of ponmo which is proving abortive as at the time writing this post.
There are controversies whether ponmo is healthy or not, some even out of desperation to stop the consumption of this organ meat refer to it as one of the leading cause of cancer and other life threatening diseases.
How true are these claims? On this post, we shall discuss the myth and truth about the consumption of ponmo in Nigeria.
What Is Cow Skin?
Cow skin also known as cow hides according to Wikipedia; is the natural, unbleached skin and hair of a cow. When a cow is slaughtered for meat, the skin which is the largest organ is being removed and mostly used by the leather industry in some developed countries and as food in some other parts of the world.
What Is Ponmo?
Ponmo is a byproduct of cow skin. It is a popular type of organ meat in Nigeria and some other countries. Despite the many claims that ponmo is unhealthy for human consumption, many still prefer ponmo due to its unique texture and taste.
In most cases, ponmo is usually cooked alongside other types of meat or fish. It is not only eaten in Nigeria alone, there are reports that ponmo is a global thing, it is widely consumed in countries like Cameroon, Ghana, India, The Caribbean, and other West African countries.
Ponmo Health Benefits: How To Process Ponmo
When the cow skin is removed, it passes through series of process before it can become edible ponmo. The purpose of processing the skin is to remove the hair, toxins and to maintain tenderness of the meat. There are two major ways through which cow skin can be processed; it is either you boil in water or you smoke it with each process having different end result.
The end result of boiling the cow skin is what produces white ponmo. This method is considered the better and safer compared to the other method. The skin is boiled in water for several hours to make the hair remover process easier. The hair is then removed by making use of a sharp knife to scrape off the hair and what you are left with afterwards is the white ponmo.
• Smoking / Burning
This method has raised serious health concern and the primary reason why ponmo is considered unsafe as well as a risk factor for developing cancer. The skin is place under naked fire to remove the hair and make the ponmo tenderized, the end result is the brown ponmo, which is then washed and boiled afterwards.
Ponmo Health Benefits: Top 4 Myths About Ponmo
Ponmo And Cancer
It is a general believe that ponmo is one of the risk factor for developing cancer, how true this is depends on the method of processing. Ponmo on its own does not cause cancer but when you consume smoked ponmo that is done by heavy fire woods and tires, which is a practice done to produce brown ponmo, this makes it a serious health concern.
To be on the safer side, it is recommended that you avoid the brown ponmo and opt for the white type which is processed through boiling.
Ponmo Has No Nutritional Value
You hear this often but not true. It is as a matter of fact wrong to say ponmo has no nutritional value or benefit. Though, it may contain lesser amounts of nutrients compared to other organ meats like hooves, gizzard, tongue, intestine etc, it will be unfair to say it has no nutrients at all as it is often claimed.
It is however recommended that you should not rely on ponmo health benefits alone as your source of protein; you should cook along with other sources of protein like meat, fish and mushrooms.
Cow Skin Habor Disease
There are also claims that people should not eat ponmo because most of the animals harbor bacterial, diseases and in some cases chemicals from injections on their skin that cannot be killed by boiling. What this claim forgot to clarify is that when an animal becomes sick, all the part of the meat is unhealthy for consumption and not just the skin.
Nigeria Ban On Ponmo
There have been massive campaign against consumption of ponmo in Nigeria and if you believe their claims that it is dangerous to health, this claim is nothing but untrue.
It is even interesting that there is no single positive report about ponmo health benefits, this is a deliberate effort to prevent people from consuming this organ meat such that there will be more cow skin for the dying hide and skin industry.
Learn More About Other Nutrition Terms You Need To Know HERE
• Ponmo has come to stay in Nigeria, it will be difficult to ban it from our markets, pots and even plates
• Burning of cow skin with tires and heavy smoke should be avoided
• Ensure to combine ponmo with other sources of protein to balance the nutrients
• Aside from leather, the government can help us seek means through which our production will be developed
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