Taro stem: All the nutrition facts, health benefits, and side effects

Taro stem is one of the most underrated foods which is super nutritious. 

Taro is mostly found in the Indian subcontinent, its stems (which include leaves as well) can be cooked in various recipes. Here, we’ll let you know all the facts about this oriental plant-based food. 

Ways to eat taro stem 

Taro stem is not your piece of cake. This very stem (including leaves) can not be eaten raw or undercooked as it might lead to itchy throats. 

In short, cook the stems well before you eat. 

Nutrition facts of taro stem 

Taro stem is a superfood. Because the taro stem contains all six vital nutrition elements that are essential for the human body. They are-

  • Carbohydrate 
  • Protein 
  • Vitamins (There are six important vitamins) 
  • Minerals (13 vital minerals are way too important for the human body)
  • Fat (That’s right. A small amount of good fat is required to stay in good health) 
  • Water 

Here, we’ll figure out the nutrition values of taro stem one by one.

Taro stem
Taro stem

Carbohydrate 

Every 100 grams of taro stem contains 35 grams of carbohydrates, whereas an adult person needs an average of 135 grams of carbs intakes daily. 

But wait! There’s more! The carbs that the taro stem contains are mostly healthy fiber and non-starch. 

That means you are not going to become overweight from eating taro stem. 

Read: The most abundant sources of carbohydrates are easy to find.

Protein

Taro stem is a vegan source of protein.

Protein is an essential element needed for the human body. They help your muscle health and keep you strong. 

The daily need for protein intake for a human depends on the individual’s weight. For every kilogram of a human’s weight, 0.8 grams of protein are needed. That means, if your weight is 50 kgs, you will need 40 grams of protein every day. 

About the taro stem, every 100 grams of taro stem contains 3 grams of protein. The amount might not seem that high, but while combined with the whole daily diet, this is quite impressive. 

Vitamins 

The six basic vitamins that are needed for the human body are-

Vitamin A, B, C, D, E, and K. Let’s take a look at how taro stem can provide these basics.

  • Vitamin A is a mandatory vitamin for the human body’s growth and development. That doesn’t mean an adult will not need them much. This vitamin is essential for a fully developed body as well. It helps human vision, immunity, and the reproduction system as well. As said, all the green and red leafy vegetables are super rich in vitamin A. Taro stem, as they contain green leaves and stems, is a good source of vitamin A. As vitamin needs of daily dose are counted in micrograms, you can remain assured with eating a few vitamin-enriched foods. Eating taro is surely assuring you to fulfill your daily need for vitamin A.
  • Vitamin B is responsible for the proper functioning of red blood cells and the metabolism system of human cells. There are 12 types of vitamin B. Among them, the particular type that taro stem provides is vitamin B6, also known as vitamers. This type of vitamin helps your enzyme activities and keeps your body fit. Taro stem is enriched in vitamin B6, that’s a great fact!
  • Vitamin C, unfortunately, is not found in any cooked food. They are found in raw fruits and vegetables only, making them a hard catch. Their main work is to keep you in good health. To be specific, this vitamin keeps the diseases away, making your body immune and resistant. Taro stem, too, contains a good amount of vitamin C. But its toxic nature makes it hard to consume it raw. Well, there is a solution to it. Taro stem can be eaten raw only if you soak them in cold water all night beforehand. Then again, you need to be cautious in this process. If the stems give you itches even after being soaked all night; better leave it. We can go for other vitamin C sources. 
  • Vitamin D is crucial for bone and tooth health. D deficiency can often result in rickets- a critical bone condition that makes one’s legs weak. Don’t worry. Taro stem is a source of a small amount of vitamin D too! Adding taro stem to your daily meal is surely going to keep your bones and teeth healthy.
  • Vitamin E is good for your heart. But, this vitamin is beneficial for not only your body’s internal affairs but also for the outer appearance as well. Vitamin E keeps your skin beautiful and makes your hair strong. Now, don’t be surprised to learn that the taro stem contains a good amount of vitamin E as well. Eating taro stem regularly helps you to stay both healthy and beautiful! 
  • Vitamin K is another rarely found vitamin. This vitamin’s main job is to help your blood clot whenever you get an injury. This job is crucial because, without this clotting process, people might die from blood loss. There are just a few sources of this precious vitamin and taro stem is one of them. Vitamin K, unlike most nutrition factors, is not something you’d need daily. But eating vitamin K enriched food regularly is a smart move because you don’t know when you might get a cut on your body. Better stay cautious. 

Minerals

The mineral elements are often undermined when people plan their diet chart. That’s not smart to do. Here, we’ll discuss 13 important minerals that the taro stem provides and how they are important. 

  • Iron is known as a crucial factor for blood health. Iron is responsible for hemoglobin level, which means, iron deficiency can cause severe anemia. But there’s nothing to be afraid of. Taro stem is surprisingly enriched in iron. Just one cup of cooked taro stem is more than enough to provide you with a huge amount of iron. 
  • Calcium is the factor that helps bone and teeth development. Calcium deficiency can cause weak bones and teeth. Though calcium is mostly a mineral found in poultry and dairy foods, the taro stem is an amazing plant source of this mineral. 
  • Sodium is responsible for the muscles. This mineral is known as sea mineral, but then there is taro stem. The superfood is a source of a small amount of sodium as well. Don’t look down upon because of the small amount. Because sodium intake is supposed to be limited to a small amount as sodium overdose might cause kidney troubles. Seems like the taro stem is balanced, right? 
  • Potassium helps to maintain the fluid balance inside your body. This mineral is also responsible for muscle health as well as helping the nervous system. Like all other “sea minerals”, potassium intake should be limited too. And guess what? Taro stem contains the exact small amount of potassium that is risk-free! 
  • Chlorine is also responsible for the human body’s fluid balance. To be even more specific, these minerals that are responsible for fluid balance are responsible for kidney health as well. This is the reason why they need to be there inside your body but in a limited amount only. Because an excessive amount of these minerals might lead to a total imbalance of body fluid. Yes, the taro stem contains a small yet perfect amount of chlorine as well. 
  • Magnesium helps your enzymatic activities inside your body. That to be said, the overall activities of the human body are controlled by the enzymatic reactions and they produce the energy required too. Taro stem contains a good amount of potassium. Including taro stem in your daily meals is surely going to keep you energetic. 
  • Phosphorus too, like calcium, is helpful to bones and teeth. But there is a specialty, phosphorus helps the rebuild of bones and teeth. This means, if you ever injure yourself, this particular mineral is going to help you come back to the previous form. Taro stem is a good source of this mineral. As there’s no certainty as to when you might hurt your bones, eating taro stem regularly is going to be a great precaution. 
  • Iodine is another sea mineral. But, it is not responsible for body fluid balance. Rather, this very mineral is necessary for your thyroid control. Iodine deficiency can cause thyroid imbalance. Taro stems do provide a quality amount of iodine too. Regular intake of taro can save you from thyroid issues as well.
  • The job of zinc is to heal your wound. Vitamin K does some of this job too, but vitamin K only helps the clotting process. Whereas, zinc helps the total healing process. Now, people who get sufficient zinc intake are most likely to have the best recoveries from any sort of wound. There goes taro stem again. Enriched with zinc, these leafy stems can help you to stay healthy and sound all the time. 
  • Human beings require a lot of energy given the busy life we have to lead. And, the mineral that gives us the energy is copper. That’s right, the taro stem contains a quality amount of copper as well. That’s a reason why the people from the Indian continent are so energetic despite their small stature. 
  • Manganese, along with vitamin K helps the blood clotting process. Vitamin K alone will not be sufficient to prevent massive blood loss. That’s why manganese is needed. Taro stem, as a source of manganese, can help the process. Intake of manganese enriched foods such as taro stem can prevent blood loss-based tragedies you know!
  • Sulfur is mostly a beautiful mineral. This particular mineral helps your skin to remain acne-free and fresh. Apart from the skin benefits, sulfur is also necessary to prevent DNA damages. As taro stems have a small amount of sulfur, they might help you with all these issues. 
  • Selenium helps the metabolism process. The process that produces energy. Taro stem, though not rich in selenium, still contains a small amount of this mineral. That might be helpful. 

Apart from these 4 basic nutrition factors, the taro stem contains a small number of good fats. Mostly fiber-related. And just like all other plant sources, taro stem too contains a good amount of water. 

Read: Top Plant Sources of Minerals for the Human Body.

Health benefits of taro stem 

Some specific health benefits come directly from taro stem consumption. Let’s take a good look at those benefits. 

  • Taro stem, as a great source of iron, prevents anemia. People with low levels of hemoglobin can benefit from eating taro.
  • Though the taro stem is super rich in carbohydrates, the carbs are all non-starchy. That makes taro a great carb choice for people with diabetes and people who are following a non-carb diet plan. The nonstarch facts help healthy weight loss.
  • The carbs in the taro stem are mostly fibers. That makes taro stem a heart-friendly food. So, people with high cholesterol and other heart risks can eat taro stem without worrying much. This is going to be helpful. 
  • As taro stem’s carbs are non-starch and fibers; they help control blood sugar
  • Plant-based proteins are great for muscle health. Taro stem does the same too.
  • Taro stem prevents breast and prostate cancer. Research has shown that taro extract can stop the cell reproduction of these two types of cancer cells. Eating taro stem can be a great precaution against cancer. 

Side effects of taro stem

Though taro stem is considered a superfood and has so many benefits, there still are some side effects to this food. 

  • The taro plant stem has needle-shaped raphides that make the plant a bit toxic. No, not deadly. But this moderate toxicity causes itchy throats. That is why this plant can’t be eaten directly. 
  • Taro stem can trigger allergic reactions in people with taro allergies.
  • Though this food is healthy and tasty, it produces a bit of gas. So, people with gastric troubles might face belatedness from eating taro stem.

We hope this has been helpful to you all. But let us remind you all once again, even though the information about taro stem provided here are all scientific truths and general, the pros and cons of any food depend on the consumer’s body and health conditions. So, before you consume taro stem, be sure that you are not allergic to this or you don’t have gastric troubles. Also, if you face issues, please do contact a physician in person. 

And, if you are all good, you can certainly enjoy the good taste of taro stem!

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