In our kitchen you don’t see it very often, while it has a prominent place in South American and Asian cuisine: cassava. In the tropics it is the most widely eaten carbohydrate-rich product after rice and corn. Although the tuberous root is naturally poisonous, cassava also has a lot of health benefits.
We’ve listed the best of cassava for you.
The health benefits of cassava
Want to try something other than the standard boiled potatoes? Then try cassava. This contains a lot of carbohydrates in the form of starch and is similar to a potato in taste, but the structure is firmer. Cassava has several health benefits, as it contains a good portion of vitamins A, C, calcium, iron and potassium. Although the root contains a lot of good nutrients, it has little protein. Therefore, it is often recommended to eat the leaves of the plant as well, as they do contain protein.
Good for your intestines
Cassava contains a lot of resistant starch and is high in fiber. That resistant starch cannot be digested by your small intestine, but it can be fermented in your large intestine. Bacteria can feed on this and thereby produce substances that reduce inflammation in your intestines. This prevents gastrointestinal problems and the fiber in cassava helps in the digestion process and absorption of healthy nutrients. In addition, it can help with constipation issues.
Good for the immune system
The large amount of vitamin C in cassava has the health benefits of supporting your immune system and stimulating the natural production of collagen. In addition to the vitamin C, it is important for your immune system that your gut is healthy. As mentioned above, the fiber-rich cassava ensures the health of your gut, so the root works doubly well for strengthening your immune system.
Cassava is also high in calcium, which is good for the health of your bones. In addition, the leaves of the plant contain vitamin K, which also helps to keep bones strong.
Good for your eyes and skin
In addition to stimulating the production of collagen through vitamin C, the vitamin A in cassava also has health benefits for the skin. For example, it supports the production of new skin cells, keeping the skin young and improving skin texture. It also stimulates the growth of your hair and nails. In addition, vitamin A is also good for your vision. This allows your eyes to better adapt to the twilight. A deficiency of vitamin A can therefore be recognized by skin problems, dull hair and night blindness.
If you want to experience the health benefits of cassava for yourself, you can occasionally substitute the root vegetable for your potatoes, pasta or rice. Its firm texture makes it perfect for making fries, for example. But you can also stew, roast, bake or puree it. It is important to always boil, fry or roast the cassava, because raw it is toxic. If you really want to get everything out of the root-tuber, you can also eat the protein-rich leaves. You can use them as a substitute for spinach. According to some, the leaves also help with headaches and healing wounds.