You may be wasting money on Yacon Syrup weight loss, concludes Oz test

2013-11-06 13:11

In a recent episode of The Dr. Oz Show, Dr. Oz puts a natural food with reported weight loss properties to the test that some believe will help you lose weight without dieting or exercise.

“It’s not a supplement, it’s not a pill - it’s a natural food that you can eat every day…it’s called ‘Yacon syrup,’” says Dr. Oz who was impressed by a study’s results that show that this South American staple could be the next big thing in weight loss.

The study Dr. Oz refers to is a paper published in the journal Clinical Nutrition that reports that Yacon syrup may prove to be a surprising weight loss tool based on their results from a study that followed obese women who took 3-4 teaspoons a day of Yacon syrup over a 4-month period and lost an average of 33 pounds and 4 inches each from their waistlines.

Yacon is a sweet potato-shaped vegetable grown in the Andes that is processed into molasses-like syrup used as a sweetener for dishes in South American homes. The taste is described as being kind of “raisiny”—a cross between a fig and a prune. A Yacon dessert for vegans is just one of many dishes that can be prepared using raw Yacon.

Researchers have determined that the health benefits of Yacon syrup go beyond weight loss in that it aids digestion and appears to regulate blood sugar levels in obese pre-menopausal women with insulin resistance. As a sugar substitute Yacon syrup is also beneficial in that it contains only 7 calories per teaspoon.

Dr. Oz explains that researchers believe that Yacon syrup works in two ways:

The first way is by changing the bacterial type in your gut from “fat-causing” bacteria to “skinny-causing” bacteria. The skinny-causing bacteria include the types Bifidus and Lactobacillus that take a sugar called “fructooligosaccharide” in Yacon syrup and convert it into short-chain fatty acids, which then decreases cholesterol synthesis in the liver and enhances tissue sensitivity to insulin.

The second way Yacon syrup works is by increasing feelings of satiety by decreasing the levels of the hunger hormone ghrelin.

“By having less of that hunger hormone, you tend to feel fuller longer,” says Dr. Oz who adds that according to the study, Yacon syrup works best for people under the following conditions:

• People who are obese or overweight
• People who need more fiber in their diet
• People who are constantly constipated
• People who have elevated blood sugar levels

“But the biggest question remains—exactly how much weight did the women here lose? Could this be the weight loss game changer you’ve been waiting for?” asks Dr. Oz as he reveals to viewers his own testing of the effectiveness of Yacon syrup on weight loss.

To put Yacon syrup to the test, Dr. Oz recruited 60 women to participate in a study by his staff where the women were followed for a 4-week period where they were instructed to eat one teaspoon of Yacon syrup with or before each meal. Furthermore, they were also instructed not to change their dieting or exercising habits during this period so that changes in their weight—if any―could be attributed to the Yacon syrup.


By the end of the 4-week long study period, 40 of the 60 women completed the study and yielded these results:

• 29 (73%) of the women lost weight
• 14 women lost five pounds or more
• Average weight loss was 2.9 pounds
• Average reduction in waist size was 1.9 inches
• Total weight lost among all the women was 153 pounds
• 27 (68%) recommended Yacon as a weight loss tool


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