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Yacon Syrup

Yacon Syrup DietHaven’t heard of yacon?

Neither had I (and neither has spell-check, which insists on auto-correcting to “bacon”). But this ancient Andean root currently ranks among the top search terms on Yahoo, thanks in part to a recent re-airing of The Dr. Oz Show from November that touts the molasses-like natural sweetener’s benefits as a weight-loss wonder —the women in his study lost an average of 3 pounds after a month of yacon-ing.

yacon root syrup, because of its nutritional properties, it has been widely used since ancient times, starting with the Incan empire. Medically speaking, the yacon syrup has manifested properties that help to improve the condition of people having diabetes as well as digestive and renal ailments. Hence, it was no surprise why its fame grew to people living Peru, Brazil and Bolivia who all used it as a nutritional supplement.

Yacon Syrup has a consistency like molasses with a deep, rich flavor similar to that of fig. Add it to coffee, tea, smoothies, salad dressings, baked goods, raw desserts or any other recipe calling for a touch of sweet!

Harvesting

Yacon tubers develop into autumn, and as the frosts approach it’s worth putting a little straw around the plant to protect the tubers. The leafy growth is withered by the cold – as soon as this happens, use a long fork to gently lift the tubers. It helps to have another person pulling on the stems of the plant at the same time to get the whole plant up.

And in the case of Dr Oz’s study, the weight loss attributed to yacon syrup could also be down to a common diet-test phenomenon whereby research subjects subconsciously make better food choices while they are under the microscope – even when they are instructed not to change their lifestyles in any other way.

happy african woman drinking coffee in the morning at home

Results You Can Taste

While the results seemed to endorse yacon syrup as a weight-loss method, critics point out that it is just one small study and would need much more before it could be certified as an effective addition to diet and exercise. Daily intake of yacon syrup produced a significant decrease in body weight, waist circumference and body mass index. Additionally, decrease in fasting serum insulin and Homeostasis Model Assessment index was observed.

The consumption of yacon syrup increased defecation frequency and satiety sensation. Fasting glucose and serum lipids were not affected by syrup treatment and the only positive effect was found in serum LDL-cholesterol levels.

It is a Low Calorie Food

To make the syrup, the tuberous roots are harvested and carefully selected for processing. They are then washed, peeled and ground down or pressed to extract the juice. After the juice is filtered, the moisture is dehydrated at temperatures between 40 – 70°C/104-156°F to produce the thick syrup. Once this process is complete, the syrup is flash pasteurized at temperatures between 80 and 100°C/176-212°F to minimize heat degradation.

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Yacon syrup has shown to remains low in calories and low on the glycemic index scale. This is due to the fact that the sugar contains high levels of oligofructose (inulin), a form of sugar that is not metabolized readily by the human body. For this reason, Yacon is ideal for diabetics and acts as a great alternative to conventional low calorie sweeteners.

Yacon Syrup for Weight Loss 

Benefits

To sum up, yacon syrup contains sweet substances that make it easier for you to maintain a low calorie diet. It also contains prebiotic inulin that helps maintain a healthy gut and digestive system, which in itself reduces constipation and contributes to weight loss. Inulin is diabetic-friendly, helps to lower LDL cholesterol, and help to protect you against heart disease and diabetes due to its high antioxidant properties.

Promise In Prebiotics

The yacón plant grows in the Andes mountains of South America and has a long history of medicinal use—for diabetes and digestive disorders—among indigenous people living in these areas. Yacón syrup is rich in prebiotics, a type of fiber that fuels the growth of healthy bacteria in the human gastrointestinal tract. Yacón is a good source of polyphenols as well, which are nutrients found in a variety of plant foods and beverages, such as red wine, green tea, and berries. Polyphenol-rich diets are associated with reduced risk of chronic diseases such as heart disease and cancer.

Lowers and regulates Blood sugar levels: The fructo-oligo saccharide sugar in yacon syrup is not consumed into the body. The human body does not have an enzyme to break down this type of sugar, so it is NOT absorbed as sugar. Therefore when in use, it does not raise blood glucose levels in the body. Enjoy its sweet taste similar to maple syrup, agave or honey without the risks of blood sugar spikes associated with these sweeteners.