Yacon - Naturally Sweet and Nutritious
Yacon (Smallanthus sonchifolius) is a nutritive plant native to the South American Andes which has captured the world's attention due to its many health-benefiting properties. Cultivated in the northern and central Andes for over a thousand years, it was later introduced to other parts of the world.
Yacon is a tuber vegetable like the potato which has crunchy roots and a distinctive taste similar to apples yet with a mild celery-like flavor. Composed mostly of water and fructooligosacchride,1 Yacon roots are juicy and can be eaten raw, used in cooking or processed into a powder or syrup, a popular alternative sweetener with a very low glycemic index and a unique molasses-like taste.
Read on to find out more about this naturally sweet, nutritious Yacon ...
Yacon is a close relative of the sunflower and Jerusalem artichoke. Growing five to seven feet tall, Yacon plants have dark green leaves and tiny yellow flowers that bloom at the end of the growing season. It has a perennial rhizome that develops right under the surface of the ground, to which the succulent tubers are attached.
In South America, Yacon tubers come in a variety of colors including white, yellow, orange, red, pink and even purple. Of all these, the white-flesh variety is the most common. Regardless of color, all Yacon tubers have the same distinctive crunchy texture, high water content and a slight difference in taste.
Nutrients and Benefits
Yacon is considered to contain the richest available source of fructooligosaccharides (FOS), a polysaccharide that is not broken down easily by the human digestive system.
With a sweet pleasant taste, FOS just passes through the human digestive tract without being metabolized, accounting for its low caloric value. FOS is friendly intestinal bacteria, including lactobacillus and bifidobacteria which are essential for promoting healthy digestion and maintaining colon health.
Yacon syrup has a glycemic index of 1 which is way below that of other natural sweeteners such as honey (50), coconut palm sugar (35) and agave syrup (15). This makes Yacon an ideal alternative sweetener to be used in a variety of applications, including functional foods, beverages and dietary supplements.
Our organic Yacon Syrup is a soluble brown liquid with a unique sweet flavor similar to molasses. It is used as a popular low-glycemic sweetener in a variety of functional foods and beverages including juices, smoothies, sauces, desserts, dressings, snacks and baked goods.
Our organic Yacon Root Powder is a partly soluble, light to dark cream powder, used as a sweetener in functional foods and beverages, dietary supplements, powder blends, tablets and capsules.
Contact us for a free sample and further product information.