White potatoes are a staple in our diet, but have you heard of their healthier variant, yucca root? This root veggie is also known as the “better white potato” or cassava and is commonly consumed in Southeast Asia, India, Africa, and South and Central America.
After maize and corn, it is the third largest source of carbohydrates in the tropics.
Yucca root is available in sweet and bitter varieties, and despite being compared to potatoes, its stringy texture is also reminiscent of pumpkin.
This root is usually ground up in various flours for baking, boiled, or friend. Yet, note that it is not related to the yucca plant, a genus of perennial shrubs and trees that produces white yucca flower clusters and yucca fruit.
Yucca root is full of nutrients, and a cup (about 206 grams) provides:
- 330 calories
- 78.4 grams carbohydrates
- 2.8 grams protein
- 0.6 gram fat
- 3.7 grams dietary fiber
- 42.4 milligrams vitamin C (71 percent DV)
- 0.8 milligram manganese (40 percent DV)
- 558 milligrams potassium (16 percent DV)
- 55.6 micrograms folate (14 percent DV)
- 0.2 milligram thiamine (12 percent DV)
- 43.3 milligrams magnesium (11 percent DV)
- 0.2 milligram copper (10 percent DV)
- 0.2 milligram vitamin B6 (9 percent DV)
- 1.8 milligrams niacin (9 percent DV)
- milligram riboflavin (6 percent DV)
- 55.6 milligrams phosphorus (6 percent DV)
- 3.9 micrograms vitamin K (5 percent DV)
- 0.7 milligram zinc (5 percent DV)
Therefore, it improves health in various ways. Here are some of its health benefits:
1. Relieves Constipation
Yucca is a rich source of fiber with a cup providing 3.7 grams of it. Therefore, it stimulates healthy bowel movements and treats and prevents constipation.
2. Boosts Immune System
A cup of yucca has 42.4 milligrams of vitamin C, and this potent antioxidant strengthens the immune system and makes you less prone to infections, colds, and even cancer.
3. Lowers Cholesterol
Yucca also lowers cholesterol levels and reduces the risk of a heart attack, stroke, or other heart problems.
4. Lowers Diabetes Risk
The high fiber content of yucca regulates blood glucose levels, and controls and manages diabetes.
5. Promotes Weight Loss
Being rich in fiber, this healthy root suppresses appetite and helps you eat fewer calories throughout the day. For best effects, consume it in the morning, baked.
Therefore, enjoy your yucca chips or fries, salad or mashed potatoes, and reap all its health benefits!