The 6 Amazing Health Benefits Of Tiger Nuts

Say ‘hi’ to this wholesome tuber that will be a healthy addition to your diet.

Reviewed by Thais Tisatto, BHSc Thais Tisatto Thais TisattoBHSc facebook_iconinsta_icon
Written by , BSc, Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health Ravi Teja Tadimalla BSc, Professional Certificate in Food, Nutrition and Health Experience: 8 years
Edited by , BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Arshiya Syeda BA (Literature & Psychology), PG Diploma Experience: 7 years
Fact-checked by , BEd, MSc (Microbiology), Diploma In Nutrition Aparna Mallampalli BEd, MSc (Microbiology), Diploma In Nutrition Experience: 5 years
 • 

Tiger nut benefits are many, and they have been cultivated for centuries and used in many cuisines. Nigerians first used them, and the Spanish used these nuts to make a creamy drink called horchata.

The benefits of these nuts are being researched. Their rich nutritional profile makes them popular among health enthusiasts. Learn more about these nuts, their nutrition, and their benefits. Continue reading.

protip_icon Know Your Ingredient: Tiger Nuts

What Is It?
They are small root vegetables the size of chickpeas with a slightly sweet and coconut-like flavor.

What Are Its Benefits?
It helps with weight loss, promotes satiety, lowers blood sugar values, and boosts libido, general digestion. immunity.

Who Can Use It?
Anyone can consume them. However, people with digestive issues such as Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) should avoid them.

How Often?
A handful of the nuts can be consumed daily.

Caution
Overconsumption may cause flatulence, abdominal pain, or even constipation.

What Are Tiger Nuts?

Tiger nuts are also known as chufa nuts or earth almonds. They are small root vegetables (also called tubers). The presence of stripes on their exteriors gives them the name tiger nuts.

Tiger nuts are the size of chickpeas with a slightly sweet and coconut-like flavor. They are starchy and fibrous and a little hard to chew. They are the perfect snack option since you can enjoy their nutty and creamy flavor and fill up on your fiber intake for the day.

protip_icon Did You Know?
Tiger nuts are gluten-free and grain-free. They are considered to be one of the best vegan snacks.

In addition to offering you the goodness of fiber, these nuts have other important benefits.

What Are The Health Benefits Of Tiger Nuts?

1. May Aid Weight loss

Tiger nuts aid weight loss
Image: Shutterstock

Fiber is an essential part of our daily diet. It helps in better digestion and excretion and reduces the risk of high cholesterol (like heart disease).

A serving of tiger nuts contains about 10 grams of fiber. The fiber also helps promote weight loss. It makes you feel full for longer and promotes satiety – thereby cutting down cravings.

A 2009 study confirms that the high fiber content in tiger nuts make it an important addition to a healthy diet (1).

2. Promotes Digestion

Tiger nuts are high in fiber (1). Fiber adds bulk to your stool and helps the digested food in your stomach to move through the gut easily (2). It also helps in better absorption of nutrients from the digested food and reduces chances of constipation by increasing the diversity of microbiome (good bacteria) in the gut.

Tiger nuts also contain certain enzymes, such as lipases, amylases, and catalases, which help in breaking down foods in the stomach and relieve flatulence, diarrhea, or indigestion (3).

3. May Lower Blood Sugar Levels

The fiber in the nuts slows down the absorption of sugar in the intestines.

Tiger nuts are a great food option for people with diabetes due to high amounts of arginine, an amino acid that stimulates insulin insulin sensitivityi  The sensitivity of the body’s cells to insulin that is needed to maintain the amount of glucose in the bloodstream. (4).

A recent study was performed on diabetic rats to determine the glucose-lowering potential of a mixture of defatted soybean and tiger nut flour. Consuming a dough-meal made with a combination of these flours was found to significantly lower blood sugar values in diabetic rats (5).

Robin, a blogger, shares how tiger nuts helped her avoid medication for type 2 diabetes: “My doc wanted to put me on Metformin. I said NO, let me change my diet first! I went grain-free & started eating tiger nuts instead of grains. Now I’m not even pre-diabetic anymore, I’m in the NORMAL range! Fasting 85-90. Perfect (i).”

4. May Improve Heart Health

Tiger nuts improve heart health
Image: Shutterstock

Tiger nuts contain high amounts of MUFAs (monounsaturated fatty acid). MUFAs are known to reduce bad cholesterol levels (LDL) and raise good cholesterol (HDL) levels in the body. This eventually lowers your risk of heart disease and stroke (6).

Tiger nuts are also high in arginine (as mentioned above), an amino acid that helps the body produce nitric oxide. Nitric oxide dilates blood vessels and lowers blood pressure (7).

5. Act As An Aphrodisiac

Historically, tiger nuts have been used as an aphrodisiac to boost libido. These are especially popular among African men, who have been consuming tiger nuts for generations to improve their sperm count and treat erectile dysfunctioni  Impotence/sexual inability in males to get and keep an erection firm enough to have sexual intercourse. .

Several rat studies confirm that regular consumption of tiger nuts can stimulate sexual activity, which is indicated by an increase in testosteronei  A hormone produced in the testicles of a male that helps regulate sex drive, sperm production, bone mass, fat distribution, etc. levels (8), (9).

6. Boost Immunity

Tiger nuts are beneficial for the immune system.

In a 2009 study, tiger nut extracts showed maximum effectiveness against E. coli, Salmonella, and Staphylococcus bacteria (10), (11).

These are the benefits of tiger nuts. Making them an essential part of the daily diet is one way you can improve your health. In the following section, we will see the various nutrients in tiger nuts that are responsible for their wholesome goodness.

What Is The Nutritional Profile Of Tiger Nuts?

We have already established that tiger nuts contain a high amount of fiber, but that is not the only nutrient they offer.

These energy-rich nuts also contain a healthy amount of omega-6i  A type of polyunsaturated fatty acid that maintains the reproductive system and bone health and regulates metabolism. and omega-9i  A type of monounsaturated fatty acid that protects the body by modulating lipid/fat metabolism and has antiseptic effects. fatty acids, which are excellent for the heart. Following is the nutrition profile of tiger nuts:

NutrientVALUE PER 100g
Fat

23g

Omega 6 fatty acid

12%

Oleic Acid (omega 9 fatty acid)

71%

Calories

~450kcals

Carbohydrates

46g

Sugar

18g

Protein

5.5g

Fiber

~24-32g

Now we know how nutritious tiger nuts can be. But how do you eat them? How do include them in your daily diet?

How Do You Eat Tiger Nuts?

Woman having tiger nuts during work
Image: Shutterstock

There are plenty of ways you can enjoy these delicious nuts:

  • Eat them just as they are. This is the best way to consume tiger nuts. They are a very healthy and tasty snack option.You can also mix them with nuts and make a trail mix.
  • Some people may not like to eat them raw since it requires a little bit of chewing. In this case, you can soak them in water for some time and add a little salt. This will make the nuts more edible and palatable.
  • Make Spanish-style Horchata. This is a sweet and creamy milk made from tiger nuts that is very popular in Spain. It is made by blending softened tiger nuts, sugar, and water.
  • These nuts can be a great addition to your breakfast. You can add them to your cereal, smoothie, or porridge.
  • You can use tiger nuts to make nut butter, just as how you would make homemade peanut, almond, or cashew butter. This is a very healthy way to incorporate tiger nuts into your diet.
  • Tiger nuts can be dried and powdered to make flour that can be used in cooking.

Proper storage is essential to maintain its flavor and reap the benefits of tiger nuts. Check out the next section for simple storage tips.

How To Store Tiger Nuts

  1. Ensure the tiger nuts are dry and free of debris, dirt, or moisture as they can cause spoilage.
  2. Place the whole tiger nuts in an airtight glass jar, a plastic container with a tight-sealing lid, or a vacuum-sealed bag.
  3. Store the nuts in a dark, cool place away from direct sunlight and sources of heat.
  4. Periodically check for signs of moisture, mold, or bad odor. Discard the tiger nuts if you notice any of these signs.

These are some of the ways you can enjoy the healthfulness of tiger nuts regularly. The most popular way of consuming tiger nuts is through the milk.

You can replace your regular cow milk at home with tiger nut milk. It would be a great way of making sure you receive the nutrients and goodness of tiger nuts in your diet.

But how do you make tiger nut milk? We will explore that in the next section.

How Can You Make Tiger Nut Milk?

A glass of tiger nut milk with a spoon full of tiger nut powder
Image: Shutterstock

Tiger nut milk, also called Horchata, is quite delicious. It can be had as it is without adding any flavor or sweetener, or it can be flavored in any way you like. Tiger nut milk also tastes great when mixed in smoothies, milkshakes, or coffee. Here is the recipe for tiger nut milk tea; it is really simple, just follow the steps.

What You Need

  • 2 cups of raw tiger nuts
  • 4 cups of clean water
  • ¼ teaspoon of sea salt
  • Flavor of your choice (optional) – cinnamon, vanilla, honey, maple, etc.
  • A mason jar
  • A strainer
  • A blender

Directions

  1. Mix the nuts and salt and place them in a mason jar.
  2. Pour water over them and cover to soak for 24 to 48 hours. The longer they soak, the better.
  3. Once they are soaked, pour them through a strainer and rinse them well.
  4. Place the tiger nuts in the blender and add two cups of water. You can also add any flavor to them.
  5. Blend the nuts with water until you get a smooth and creamy mixture.
  6. Pour this blended mixture through a mesh strainer to separate the milk. Blend the nuts again if needed to obtain more strained milk from them.
  7. Pour the milk into a glass jar and store in the refrigerator. It will stay good for up to three days.

protip_icon Quick Tip
Alternatively, you can add a 1-inch piece of ginger, ¼ cup of jaggery, or a handful of dates to add flavor to your tiger nut milk.

Quite simple, isn’t it? But before you go ahead and start consuming tiger nuts, there is something else you must know.

Do Tiger Nuts Have Side Effects?

Woman experiences constipation due to side effect of tiger nuts
Image: Shutterstock

The only possible drawback is their fiber content, which may cause issues if you take too much of it (12). Excess fiber can cause flatulence, abdominal pain, or even constipation.

There is no study on how many tiger nuts one can consume. A handful of the nuts a day should do. Anything beyond that can cause stomach cramping and other issues due to its high fiber content.

Infographic: Important Health Benefits Of Tiger Nuts

Tiger nuts are nuts the size of small chickpeas and are a popular snack option due to their rich, creamy, and nutty flavor. You can enjoy eating these nuts in various ways, as discussed in this article. But to learn about the vital health benefits of tiger nuts, check out the infographic below.

important health benefits of tiger nuts (infographic)

Illustration: StyleCraze Design Team

Tiger nuts are tubers with a sweet, nutty flavor. The many benefits of tiger nuts can be attributed to their vitamins and minerals, fiber, and antioxidants. They may aid weight loss, promote digestion, lower blood sugar levels, improve heart health, increase testosteronei  A hormone produced in the testicles of a male that helps regulate sex drive, sperm production, bone mass, fat distribution, etc. levels, and boost immune health. However, their high fiber content may cause abdominal pain, flatulence, and constipation. Hence, eat them in moderation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Where can I buy tiger nuts from?

You can buy tiger nuts at your nearest grocery store. You can also get them online.

How do tiger nuts affect a woman’s body?

Studies suggest that regular consumption of tiger nuts may ease menstrual cramps and improve fertility in women (13). However, more research is warranted in this area.

Do tiger nuts make you sleepy?

No, currently no studies suggest that tiger nuts make people sleepy. However, anecdotal evidence indicates that it calms the mind which may help induce sleep.

Are tiger nuts good for the kidney?

According to animal studies, tiger nut oil may significantly improve kidney function (14). However, clinical trials must be performed to further understand the relationship between the two.

Can tiger nuts shrink fibroids?

No, there is no scientific evidence that suggests that a nutrient-rich food like tiger nuts can shrink fibroids.

Are tiger nuts alkaline or acidic?

Raw tiger nut tubers as well as the big yellow and little brown forms contain alkaloids, a broad class of chemicals with alkali-like properties. This makes tiger nuts alkaline in nature (15).

Key Takeaways

  • Tiger nuts are a good option to include in a diet for weight loss as they are rich in fiber. They also promote digestion and prevent constipation.
  • Tiger nuts have healthy fats which help in lowering cholesterol and improve heart health.
  • They have a low glycemic index and help regulate blood sugar levels, which makes them diabetic friendly.
  • Tiger nuts can be consumed in limited amounts as an excess of it can cause abdominal pain or flatulence.
tiger nuts benefits

Image: Stable Diffusion/StyleCraze Design Team

Learn about the incredible health, beauty, and sexual benefits of tiger nuts for women. Learn how to use this superfood to look and feel your best. Check it out!

Personal Experience: Source

References

Articles on StyleCraze are backed by verified information from peer-reviewed and academic research papers, reputed organizations, research institutions, and medical associations to ensure accuracy and relevance. Read our editorial policy to learn more.

  1. Preparation Of Dietary Fiber Powder From Tiger Nut Milk Byproducts And Its Physicochemical Properties“. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  2. Effect of Dietary Fiber on Constipation: A Meta-Analysis“. World Journal of Gastroenterology, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  3. Tiger Nut Commercialization: Health Aspects, Composition, Properties, and Food Applications“. Comprehensive Reviews in Food Science and Food Safety.
  4. Changes in Mineral Status are Associated with Improvements in Insulin Sensitivity in Obese Patients Following L-Arginine Supplementation“. European Journal of Nutrition, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  5. Nutritional, Antioxidant, Glycemic Index and Antihyperglycaemic Properties of Improved Traditional Plantain-Based Dough-Meal Enriched with Tigernut and Defatted Soybean Flour for Diabetic Patients“. Heliyon, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  6. Monounsaturated Fatty Acid and Risk of Cardiovascular Disease…“. Nutrients, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  7. The LargPAD Trial: Phase IIA Evaluation of L-Arginine Infusion in Patients with Peripheral Artery Disease“. Journal of Vascular Surgery, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  8. Influence of Cyperus esculentus Tubers (Tiger Nuts) on Male Rat Copulatory Behavior“. Biomedical Central Complementary and Alternative Medicine, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  9. Effect of Dietary Supplementation of Tiger Nut and Walnut on Sexual Behavior, Hormone Level, and Antioxidant Status in Male Rats“. Journal of Food Biochemistry.
  10. Phytochemical Observation and Antibacterial Activity of Cyperus esculentus“. Ancient Science of Life, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  11. Antibacterial Activities of the Methanol Extracts of Seven Cameroonian Dietary Plants Against Bacteria Expressing MDR Phenotypes“. SpringerPlus, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  12. Stopping or reducing dietary fiber intake reduces…” World Journal of Gastroenterology, US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health.
  13. Tiger Nut as A Functional Food, Pharmacological…”Journal of the Nigerian Young Academy, Sciendo
  14. The effect of Cyperus esculentus (Tigernut) oils…”International Journal of Food Science and Nutrition, ResearchGate
  15.  “Preliminary Phytochemical Screening, Elemental and Proximate Composition of Two Varieties of Cyperus esculentus (Tiger Nut)” Nigerian Journal of Basic and Applied Sciences
Was this article helpful?
thumbsupthumbsdown
Thais Tisatto

Thais TisattoBHSc (Health Science)

Thais Tisatto is a Holistic Nutritionist from the Gold Coast, Australia. She has a very strong passion for women’s health, gut health, hormonal balance, and sports nutrition. She analyzes every single one of her cases in clinic from a holistic perspective, taking into consideration not only physical, but also emotional and spiritual factors that might be affecting an individual's health....read full bio

Latest Articles