Can you eat jicama raw?

In this brief guide,  we will discuss the question,” can you eat jicama raw?”. We will also discuss the storage, health benefits, uses, and side effects of eating jicama.

Can you eat jicama raw?

Yes, you can eat jicama raw or cooked, but if you want to enjoy its crunchy, sweet, nutty tuber, it is recommended you take it raw also since it has more nutrient composition when in the raw state and hence more health benefits.

What is jicama?

Jicama, Pachyrhizus eros, is a root vegetable with thick brown skin, white inside, and has an apple-like taste and looks like a potato but with much fewer carbs.

Jicama is mostly grown in Central America and Mexico on a long vine but the part you eat is the root.

Jicama also has other names which included ;

  • Mexican potato
  • Mexican yam
  • Mexican yam bean
  • Chinese potato 
  • Leafcup
  • Mexican turnip

Jicama can grow up to 50 pounds but the small ones are the best to eat.

How is jicama preserved?

There are several ways in which jicama can be stored but in all, one aspect has to be met and that is to try as much as possible to keep jicama dry to preserve its freshness and also increase its shelf life.

Jicama can be stored at room temperature unwrapped in a cool dry place under temperatures between 53 and 59 degrees  Fahrenheit in a place where it cannot accumulate moisture.

Jicama can also be stored in a refrigerator once cut into by first patting dry, wrapping tightly in a plastic bag, and storing it in the vegetable drawer in the fridge. It is advised to keep it out of the coldest part of the fridge.

Jicama can also be stored in a freezer by wrapping whole in a foil and covering well so there can be no gaps in the products and keep away from high moisture areas of the freezer. Jicama stored this way can last up to 12 months if unpeeled and 9 months if peeled.

What are the health benefits of eating raw jicama?

  • Source of fiber
  • Antioxidants 
  • Source of vitamins 
  • Boosts heart health 
  • safe for blood sugar 
  • Helps with hydration
  • Prebiotics

Source of fiber

Instead of peeling an apple,  one can peel and slice jicama and deep it in nut butter, and eat it. It has a lot of fiber which helps prevent constipation and lowers the chances of getting colon cancer.

Antioxidants 

Jicama has antioxidants that help reduce free radicals in the body hence reducing the chances of the development of cancerous cells in our bodies.

Source of vitamins 

Jicama has Vitamin A which is good for the eyes and the skin and helps boost the immune system. It also has Vitamin B-6 which helps in the formation of red blood cells and also supports the brain and the nervous system. 

Boosts heart health 

Jicama has fibers that may lower cholesterol levels which may cause heart diseases 

Safe for blood sugar

If you are checking your insulin levels, jicama is a healthy snack since it has low glycine levels on its carbs.

Helps in hydration 

Jicama is made up of 85% water and so aids in hydrating the body when consumed.

Prebiotics 

Jicama has this rare fiber that helps restore the good bacteria in the gut.

What can I use jicama for?

  • Jicama can be added to vegetable salads
  • Combine with mangoes or apples for a tropical fruit salad
  • Add to a vegetable platter 
  • Stir fry it with sesame oil and rice vinegar 

What are the side effects of eating raw jicama?

Jicama has high fiber content and so excess consumption may lead to digestive upsets. A large amount of fiber consumed in a short period of time may cause bloating, gas, and abdominal cramps.

It is advised to introduce your body to high fiber gradually so as for the bacteria in the gut to adapt and hence the reduction in occurrences of the above side effects.

The bottom line 

Jicama has high nutritional values and should be incorporated into our diet but with precautions to avoid the side effects of high fiber consumption in a short period of time.

Conclusion 

In this brief guide,  we have discussed the question,” can you eat jicama raw?”. We have also discussed the storage, health benefits, uses, and side effects of eating raw jicama.

Citations 

https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/jicama-health-benefits
https://www.livestrong.com/article/472353-side-effects-of-jicama/
https://www.foodnetwork.com/fn-dish/recipes/2011/09/how-to-use-jicama
https://foodsguy.com/store-jicama/
https://nchfp.uga.edu/publications/nchfp/factsheets/jicama.pdf

What was missing from this post which could have made it better?

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.