Want to lose weight? Try drinking waste water from cooking sweet potatoes, scientists say
Updated: Mar 28, 2019
Japanese researchers found proteins in the starchy water suppress appetite
It contains sweet potato peptide which is produced during the boiling process
After 28 days, mice fed high levels of the protein were found to have lost weight
Experts say the results could be replicated in humans
Many of us have tried weight loss methods that promise instant results - but now scientists claim a miracle slimming aid could be right in front of us, potentially spelling the end of controversial diets.
New research concludes that drinking the leftover water from boiling sweet potatoes could help to keep a slender figure.
Proteins in the starchy waste suppress appetite in mice, but experts say the findings could be replicated in humans.
Japanese researchers fed two groups of mice high fat diets, giving one higher levels of sweet potato peptide (SPP) - produced by enzyme digestion of proteins in the water during the boiling process.
After 28 days the animals were weighed and their liver mass and fatty tissue levels measured. Cholesterol and triglyceride levels were also taken, as well as leptin, which controls hunger.
Lead researcher Dr Koji Ishiguro said: 'We throw out huge volumes of waste water that contains sweet potato proteins.
'We hypothesised that these could affect body weight, fat tissue and other factors.
'Finding alternative uses for the sweet potato proteins in wastewater could be good for the environment and industry, and also potentially for health.'
He concluded: 'We were surprised that SPP reduced the levels of fat molecules in the mice and that it appears to be involved controlling appetite suppression molecules.
'These results are very promising, providing new options for using this wastewater instead of discarding it.
'We hope SPP is used for the functional food material in future.'
It is unsure how much SPP the mice were given during their 28 day period.
However, it is believed the findings could ring true in humans due to mice being very biologically similar. But the researchers were keen to point out that further research is needed to determine the link.
The study was published in the journal Heliyon.