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Sim Sim

Simsim is a flowering plant which is cultivated for its edible seeds, which grow in pods. It has one of the highest oil contents of any seed. Simsim seed is considered to be the oldest oilseed crop known to man, domesticated well over 5000 years ago. Simsim is very drought-tolerant plant with an ability to grow where most Crops fail. Simsim ranks second in importance to groundnuts. It has been cultivated and used in Uganda since 1910 when the crop was first introduced from Kenya and distributed in Eastern Uganda. Simsim is predominantly grown in the North and North Eastern parts of Uganda and a considerable amount is also grown in Eastern Uganda.

Uganda is the fifth largest producer of simsim in the world and is only second to Sudan in Africa. It is estimated that Uganda produces about 170,000 metric tons annually.

Areas in Uganda that grow Simsim in Uganda
The production of simsim, or sesame, is concentrated mostly in the regions of:
• Lango
• Teso
• Acholi
• West Nile.

Simsim Varieties in Uganda
Only two Simsim varieties are known to be grown in Uganda,
• Sesim I
• Sesim II.

The future of Simsim production in Uganda is very promising due to its economic value and export potential, which has made it a favourable crop to farmers.

Different Ways in Which to Consume Simsim
Simsim can be used in different ways as follows:
• It can be eaten raw or roasted.
• Its paste can added to smoked meat, fish and some types of vegetables to make delicious soup. Some people prefer to apply the paste to bread instead of margarine.
• Simsim seed balls made by mixing it with sugar is a favourite among children.
• Bakers add simsim seeds to bread and the top of hamburgers to give them a rich nutty taste.
• Extraction of oil out of the seeds

Health Benefits of Simsim
Simsim enhances well-being because it is rich in a number of trace minerals and other food nutrients which translate into tremendous health benefits.
• Simsim contains calcium, which helps build bones, enhance bone density and lower the risk of Osteoporosis
• Eating Simsim has been proven to bring relief to people suffering from Rheumatoid Arthritis, a Chronic joint disease that causes damage to joints in the body.
• Simsim seeds are high in dietary fibre and add roughage to the intestines which improves bowel movements and helps prevent constipation.

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