Tapioca is a starchy product made from cassava tubers. These tubers are native to Brazil and much of South America. Tapioca is available as flour, meal, flakes, and pearls. Tapioca pearls are commonly used to make tapioca pudding and bubble teas. Tapioca is also used as a thickener.
Tapioca is almost entirely starchy carbohydrates (carbs). People who limit their consumption of carbs or who are concerned about how starches impact blood sugar levels may perceive tapioca as unhealthy. Tapioca is high on the glycemic index scale. The glycemic index measures how fast blood sugar levels increase after eating.
Here's a look at the nutritional information for tapioca.
1. Free of common allergens
Tapioca is gluten-free, nut-free, and grain-free. It won't cause problems for people with celiac disease, gluten sensitivity, and nut allergies. Tapioca flour can be found in many gluten-free products. It's a good option for allergen-free baking at home. It's also an alternative to white flour for thickening soups, sauces, and pie fillings.
Tapioca is cholesterol-free. High cholesterol may cause a buildup of plaque in your arteries, which is known as atherosclerosis. Left unchecked, atherosclerosis may lead to angina, heart attack, and stroke.
3. Has dietary fiber
A cup of tapioca pearls has about 1.5 grams of dietary fiber. It's not a lot, but it can help you meet the daily recommended value of 21 to 38 grams. Most people don't consume nearly enough fiber. Yet fiber offers many health benefits such as lowering cholesterol, maintaining blood sugar levels, and preventing constipation.
4. Is easy to digest
Tapioca is known for being easy on the stomach. Many people find it easier to digest than flours made with grains or nuts. Tapioca may be recommended as a source of calories and energy during digestive flares from conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome and diverticulitis.
5. Supports weight gain
If you need to gain weight fast, tapioca may help. One cup of tapioca pearls has 544 calories and 135 carbs.
If you eat...