White potatoes are a staple in America. However, they aren’t the healthiest, so you might be looking for something better. That’s where yucca root comes in.
Also known as cassava, this root veggie is called the “better white potato”. It is a common food in Southeast Asia, India, Africa, and South and Central America. Yucca is also extremely versatile, making it perfect for both savory and sweet dishes.
If you haven’t tried yucca, don’t miss out. Here are 5 remarkable health benefits.
1. Relieves Constipation
Can’t seem to have bowel movements? Eat yucca. One cup has 3.7 grams of fiber, a nutrient that will encourage healthy bowel movements. It’ll also keep you regular, so it won’t happen again.
For even more fiber, eat yucca with whole grains. But do be sure to do it slowly, because increasing your intake too fast can lead to more constipation. Drink lots of water, too.1
2. Reduces Diabetes Risk
Fiber causes a slow increase in blood sugar, making it great for regulating blood glucose.2 So if you’re pre-diabetic or at a high risk, eat some yucca.
And if you already have diabetes? Don’t avoid this tasty root vegetable. Its fiber content can control and manage your condition.
3. Lowers Cholesterol
The fiber in yucca will also improve cholesterol levels. It works by capturing bile, a digestive liquid that’s partially made of cholesterol. When you pass stool – fiber is excreted – taking bile along with it. The body responds by breaking down LDL (“bad”) cholesterol to make enough bile for digestion.
As a result, your total cholesterol decreases. You’ll be less likely to have a heart attack, stroke, or other heart problems.3
4. Promotes Weight Loss
If you’re trying to shed some pounds, add yucca to your diet. Its fiber content will keep you full for a long time, so you’ll be less likely to binge. Your appetite and hunger will also stay under control.4
To take advantage of yucca, eat it in the morning. This will give you a nice satiety boost during the entire day. You can also snack on yucca fries or chips in between meals to keep you satisfied. To keep it healthy, always bake instead of fry.
5. Boosts Immune System
Eating yucca can help you stay healthy. One cup has 42.4 milligrams of vitamin C! This is almost half the recommended intake for men and women i.e., 85 and 95 milligrams, respectively.
As a powerful antioxidant, vitamin C keeps your immunity in tip-top shape. It’s needed to prevent infections, colds, and even cancer. Vitamin C increases your production of white blood cells and antibodies, so your immunity can flourish.5
To cook yucca, use it like a potato. Easy options include fries or chips. For a delicious side dish, turn yucca root into mashed potatoes or potato salad.
|↑1, ↑2, ↑4||Fiber. Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.|
|↑3||Lambeau, Kellen V., and Johnson W. McRorie. “Fiber supplements and clinically proven health benefits: How to recognize and recommend an effective fiber therapy.” Journal of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners (2017).|
|↑5||Immunity In Depth. Oregon State University.|