What The FLIK is...Tiger Nut?
You might have seen this emerging superfood on the market. From flours to snacks and even as an alternative milk, these chickpea-sized snacks were a staple in the diet of ancient Egyptians. In recent years they have gained popularity for their perceived health benefits.
What the FLIK is...a Tiger Nut?
They are actually not nuts but tubers, roots of a plant, like potatoes. Given the name Tiger Nut due to their brown color and striped pattern. In Spain, where they have been popular for centuries, they are called chufas. They have the texture and flavor similar to an almond or chestnut.
How to use Tiger Nuts
The whole “nut” can be eaten raw, boiled or roasted. In the US, they are commonly found in roasted form as a packaged snack. They are also ground into meal or flour and used in baking. Tiger nuts are commonly used in Spain to create a beverage called Horchata; similar to soy or almond milk.
Because they are not actually a nut Tiger Nuts make a great snack and baking alternative to people with nut allergies. They are also gluten-free. They contain various vitamins and minerals including phosphorus, potassium, vitamin C, and E.
The greatest known health benefit of Tiger Nuts is their high fiber content. 1 oz of Tiger Nuts contains 10 grams of fiber. It is also a specific fiber known as resistant starch fiber. Resistant starch fiber passes through the stomach undigested, preventing blood sugar spikes and promoting the feeling of fullness. Once it reaches the intestine it is used as a prebiotic to feed good gut bacteria. While Tiger Nuts effect on weight loss has not specifically been studied, resistant starch fiber has been shown to promote weight loss by assisting with satiety.
In addition to fiber 1 oz (about 50 pieces) contains 120 calories, 2 grams of protein, 7 grams of mostly unsaturated fat and 19 grams of carbohydrates. In comparison 1 oz of almonds contains 165 calories, 6 grams of protein, 14 grams of fat, 6 grams of carbohydrates and 3 grams of protein. If you are looking for a low carb snack choice traditional nuts would be a preferred choice.
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