The Peruvian Yacón (Llacon) grows at altitudes under 9,300 feet high, in climates that are warmer and more humid than those in which other tubers usually grow. Yacón usually grows in small farm orchards in mountains valleys. The area of the crop has not expanded much in recent decades. In some Andean valleys, yacón is sold at market fairs
The Peruvian Yacon has a crunchy texture like a water chestnut and is refreshingly sweet and juicy. Left in the sun, its sweetness intensifies, and it can be eaten as a fruit, consumed in drinks, syrups, cakes or pickles or in stir-fries.Though packed with sugar, its principal appeal to the health conscious lies in the fact that the sugar in question is mainly oligofructose, which cannot be absorbed by the body. That means yacon is naturally low-calorie; a jar of yacon syrup contains half the calories as a same-sized jar of honey, and its sugar does not raise blood glucose levels. In addition, oligofructose promotes beneficial bacteria in the colon. Certain modern health products, such as so-called bio-yogurts, have oligofructose added to achieve the same effect, but yacon already has that quality naturally. The yacon root is an excellent natural remedy used in treatment of diabetes and liver disease, and yacon leaves are used to treat hypertension.