Forget about everyday sweet cakes and try out some cassava cake, especially if you are into gluten-free treats. Depending on your preference, it can be sweetened (with a fruit) or plain. Different from other common cakes made from wheat flour, cassava cake, nutritionists say, is a perfectly healthy snack alternative. Erick Musengimana, a nutritionist working with Rwanda Diabetes Association, says cassava itself is a healthy alternative to the many different carbohydrates people consume on a daily basis. He says that cassava contains vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, and vitamin K which have a role in bone mass building by promoting orthotropic activity in the bones. Cassava also contains electrolytes, six percent of potassium and one per cent of sodium, with lots of minerals, and iron which help blood carry oxygen throughout the body. David Rukerabigwi, a dietician and nutritionist in Kigali, says cassava cake as a dessert or snack is a good source of resistant starch, which supports gut health and blood sugar management. It also contains vitamin C, a key micronutrient that can enhance immune function and collagen production. “Cassava is rich in carbohydrates and iron as a good source of energy. Incorporating cassava cake into a diet will bring many health benefits,” Rukerabigwi says. For people who want to lose weight, going for plain cassava cake not only helps them snack on healthy food but also helps in maintaining good weight as it’s rich in dietary fibre which is the right choice for those struggling to lose weight. “Cassava can make you feel full for a longer period of time. Thus reducing the need to constantly snack on food so as to suppress weight gain,” he says. It has been established that the presence of vitamin B2 and riboflavin in tubers is useful for curing headaches and migraines, and that eating cassava can help reduce constant migraine attacks. Musengimana says this snack helps improve the digestive system in general. This is so because cassava is rich in dietary fibre which is very beneficial for the body and its function. Insoluble fibre helps in improving the digestive system by absorbing all the poisons stored in your intestine, and also by reducing inflammation in your digestive tract. For those suffering from diarrhoea, when you snack of this delicious cake, the antioxidant properties of the roots can help overcome hard stools. If you have diarrhoea, boil the roots in water for one hour and consume them. Nutritionists say this will help get rid of bacteria that causes stomach problems and reduces the severity of diarrhoea as well. In addition, Musengimana says cassava is beneficial to eye health.