Tapioca doesn’t have many health benefits, but it is grain- and gluten-free. There are other benefits you should know of, to help you decide if you want to include it in your diet.
It’s Suitable for Restricted Diets
Many people are allergic or intolerant to wheat, grains and gluten. In order to manage their symptoms, they need to follow a restricted diet. Since tapioca is naturally free of grains and gluten, it may be a suitable replacement for wheat- or corn-based products.
For example, it can be used as flour in baking and cooking or as a thickener in soups or sauces.
However, you may want to combine it with other flours, such as almond flour or coconut flour, to increase the amount of nutrients.
It May Contain Resistant Starch
Tapioca is a natural source of resistant starch. As the name implies, resistant starch is resistant to digestion and functions like fiber in the digestive system. Resistant starch has been linked to a number of benefits for overall health.
It feeds the friendly bacteria in the gut, thereby reducing inflammation and the number of harmful bacteria. It may also lower blood sugar levels after meals, improve glucose and insulin metabolism and increase fullness. These are all factors that contribute to better metabolic health.
However, given the low nutrient content, it is probably a better idea to get resistant starch from other foods instead. This includes cooked and cooled potatoes or rice, legumes and green bananas.