Sweet, rich, ooey gooey syrup…you always knew pouring too much on top of your stack of pancakes wasn’t great for you, but hey, what would pancakes be without it?! What if there was a syrup - sweet, rich and perfect for your stack o’pancakes - that could actually help you lose weight instead of gaining it? Sounds too good to be true, right? Claims in the health world are going around about a newly popular health syrup on the market called yacon syrup Let’s take an objective look at the research and find out if there is any evidence to back these claims up. While research is still new and we can’t say anything or sure, there has been one double blind study in particular that we will highlight in this article. Before we dive into the research, lets first define what yacon syrup is. Smallanthus Sonchifolius, also know as the yacon plant, is a tuberous root that has been used by the natives in the Andes Mountains for centuries for diabetes, kidney disorders and digestive problems. The juice, extracted from the tuberous roots, is then filtered and evaporated similar to the way maple syrup is processed. The end product having a texture somewhere between maple syrup and molasses, with a taste some describe as being like pears, apples, raisins or figs. The sweetness in this special syrup actually comes from a fiber called fuctooligosaccharides, or FOS, and this is where we get into the scientific research… You see, FOS acts as a prebiotic fiber in the gut, which supports the healthy environment necessary for a healthy ratio of good to bad bacteria in the microbiome. In other words, FOS is a substance that helps support a health microbiome. And it’s not just found in yacon roots, but also in other fruits and vegetables like tomatoes, onions and asparagus! The study we will refer to in this article was conducted over a 120 day period in a double-blind placebo controlled study on obese pre-menopausal women. The control group was given one teaspoon of yacon syrup twice daily, while the placebo was not. Both groups walked 45 minutes per day and stuck to a low-calorie diet for the study The difference was in weight loss was dramatic.
After 120 days, the control group saw a significant decrease in body weight, waist circumference and BMI. A decrease in fasting serum insulin was also observed. The daily consumption of yacon syrup increased bowel movements per day as well as the feeling of being more satiated. It should be noted that among the 55 women in the study, 15 were given more than two teaspoons of yacon syrup per day and dropped out of the study due to gastrointestinal complaints - likely due to the high amounts of prebiotic fiber FOS. Too much of anything can be not-so-good, so we suggest that you keep it at 2 teaspoons a day. Sources: 1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0261561409000302 2. https://www.drweil.com/diet-nutrition/diets-weight-loss/yacon-syrup-for-weight-loss/ 3. https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/does-yacon-syrup-work#section1