Cassava Benefits + Side Effects

By Adriane Marie •  Updated: 08/03/22 •  8 min read
cassava benefits and side effects

Health

Cassava health benefits may include:

Cassava health side effects may include:

Additionally, cassava benefits also include…

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08/19/2022 08:02 pm GMT

Environment

Water footprint: low, it takes 387 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of starchy roots / 46 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of starchy roots

Carbon footprint: low, 0.4 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of starchy roots, a car driving equivalent of 1 miles or 1.5 kilometers

Destruction: low, there is no known significant damage to air, water, land, soil, forests, etc. as long as pesticides have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc., cassava is a hardy crop, resistant to drought does not require much fertilizer

Cassava is…

Animals

Kills: none, cassava production does not require any animals to be killed

Harms: none, cassava production does not require any animals to be used

Indirectly kills or harms: none, no animals are indirectly killed or harmed from cassava production as long as toxic chemicals have not been used, be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as pesticides harm and kill wildlife and ecosystems by contaminating soil, water, air and plants that animals eat

Cassava is…

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Laborers

Health and safety: varies, overall, agriculture continues to be one of the most dangerous industries, farmworkers may be subject to dehydration, heat stroke, unprotected exposure to harmful, toxic chemicals and pesticides, unsafe machinery and clean drinking water may not always accessible

Living conditions: varies, laborers are often exploited, they may face tough working conditions including long hours in the sun and heat performing physically exhausting tasks, labor laws and rights may or may not be in place, even if worker protection exists, employer violations may go unreported, refugees and migrant workers are especially vulnerable to abuse and mistreatment, fearing consequences of job loss or deportation

Wages: varies, generally farmworkers earn meager wages, there are many cases of underpaid agricultural workers, wage theft and no overtime payment or benefits

Cassava…

The world’s top cassava producing country is Nigeria, followed by Democratic Republic of the Congo and Thailand.

The world’s top cassava exporting country is Costa Rica, followed by Honduras, Thailand, Portugal, Netherlands, Spain, USA, Ecuador, Vietnam and Philippines.

Yes! Cassava is high in vitamin C, thiamine, riboflavin, and niacin.

Other names for cassava are manioc, Brazilian arrowroot and yuca.

cassava is gluten free.

gluten free foods and what to eat on a gluten free diet

Is cassava gluten free?

Yes, cassava is gluten free. cassava does not contain gluten.

Celiac and gluten sensitivity symptoms are similar and may include:

There are hundreds of potential symptoms, many of which are also symptoms of other conditions.

Going gluten-free easier than ever with this: Gluten and Gluten Free Foods List

cassava is not a common food allergen.

the most common food allergens include milk, wheat, soy, fish, tree nuts, peanuts, eggs and crustaceans

Is cassava a common food allergen?

No, cassava is not a common food allergen. Some people may experience allergic reactions to cassava but it is relatively rare by comparison.

A group of the eight major allergenic foods, AKA the Big-8, include:

Severe food allergies can be life threatening. Following ingestion of a food allergen, a person with food allergies can experience a severe, life-threatening allergic reaction called anaphylaxis. 

Persons may still be allergic to and have serious reactions to foods other than the eight foods identified by the law.

Be aware of common dietary restrictions and food allergens with this: The Big 8 Most Common Food Allergens List

cassava has a low water footprint.

water footprints of food and products

Does cassava have a high or low water footprint?

Cassava has a low water footprint compared to other foods.

What is the water footprint of cassava?

It takes 387 liters of water to produce 1 kilogram of starchy roots / 46 gallons of water to produce 1 pound of starchy roots.

Did you know that water is a finite, non-renewable resource?

How much water does it take to produce an apple? A serving of rice? A steak dinner?

We need to be aware of something referred to as a “water footprint”. That is, the amount of fresh water utilized in the production or supply of goods we consume. As it turns out it takes significantly more water to yield foods that come from animals than foods that come from plants. Imagine how much water a cow needs to consume to generate a piece of beef. Not only how much water a single cow drinks, rather all the water that went into producing the crops that the cow ate.

Find out how much water your food consumes with this: Water Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

cassava has a low carbon footprint.

carbon footprints of food and food emissions

Does cassava have a high or low carbon footprint?

Cassava has a low carbon footprint compared to other foods.

What is the carbon footprint of cassava?

It takes around 0.4 kg CO2e to produce 1 kilogram or 2.2 pounds of starchy roots, a car driving equivalent of 1 miles or 1.5 kilometers.

When calculating carbon emissions, some factors may include…

But that’s not all!

It’s best to keep the following in mind when grocery shopping:

Find out how much carbon your food emits with this: Carbon Footprints of Foods and Ingredients List

cassava is sustainable.

sustainable shopping, for eco friendly brands and products good for the environment

Overall, is cassava eco friendly? Is cassava sustainable?

Cassava production is relatively sustainable. There is no known significant damage as long as pesticides have not been used. Be sure to buy Non-GMO/organic, as toxic, chemical pesticides contaminate air, water, soil, etc. when using regenerative practices.

A 2018 Oxford University study – which is the most comprehensive analysis to date of the damage farming does to the planet – found that ‘avoiding meat and dairy is the single biggest way to reduce your impact on Earth’ as animal farming provides just 18% of calories but takes up 83% of our farmland.

Consuming animal products and byproducts is not environmentally friendly and is one of the worst things for the Earth. Not only is meat production wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution. The industry is one of the biggest causes of climate change.

cassava is vegan.

vegan food to eat on a vegan diet

Is cassava vegan?

Yes, cassava is vegan. Cassava is a starchy tuberous root of a tree and not an animal product or byproduct, therefore making it a vegan food. 

Animals of factory farming are suffering. They live in horrific conditions that often include confinement, physical abuse and unnatural environments…so much so that they need to receive antibiotics to keep from getting ill or spreading disease. Growth hormones allow all kinds of animals to become fatter faster and live short lives.

Because we cannot see for ourselves how these animals live and what they endure does not mean it isn’t happening. The meat, poultry and dairy industries do everything they can to distance us from knowing how our food comes to be in order to keep us in the dark about what we support each time we buy animal derived products and byproducts.

Go vegan for animals!

It’s the best way to help animals and it’s not as difficult as you may think. Speak for animals with your actions, for they cannot speak at all.

Going vegan is easier than ever, at a glance with this: Vegan and Non Vegan Foods List

cassava is a product that may or may not have labor issues.

labor rights, human rights and workers rights issues

Is cassava a product that has known labor issues?

At this time, there are no known specific reports of worker mistreatment regarding cassava farming but that doesn’t mean it isn’t happening. Cassava may or may not have labor issues.

Did you know the single largest employer in the world is agriculture? The labor involved behind each and every product cannot go unrecognized. 

Some known problems include workplace health and safety, child labor, gender inequality, inadequate pay, wage theft and exploitation. Workers can even experience harassment, humiliation and violence and unfair employers often fail to provide laborers with access to shade, drinking water, restrooms and breaks. Consequently, laborers can face nausea, dizziness, heat exhaustion, dehydration and heat stroke -the leading cause of farmworker death! 

Such mistreatment is like modern day slavery. Workers are often afraid to report issues because they fear it will result in losing their jobs or deportation. 

Fair trade organizations fight to ensure better social, environmental and economic standards. 

We can improve people’s lives with foods we eat every day simply by buying products that are certified fair trade.

Sources:

Cassava, raw – FoodData Central – USDA

Agricultural Marketing Service

Cassava Plant Guide – USDA Plants Database

yuca (cassava) – Market News – Fruit and Vegetable

Adriane Marie

Grocery Guru, Material Maven, Conscious Consumer Connoisseur. I organize ethical info for us to comprehensively see how purchases impact people, animals and the planet. I hope you find HEALabel helpful! Use it for personal and global improvement and empowerment.

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