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Yam: benefits, recipes and how to consume

Yam: benefits, recipes and how to consume

Yam is a widely used tuber in southeastern and northeastern Brazil. It is the name given to the rhizomes of plants of the genus Dioscorea .

Yams are a good source of carbohydrate and also a number of useful nutrients for health.

It can also be consumed as a juice, which (100 g)


YamsYams (100 g)
Calories97 kcal
Carbohydrates23.2 g
Proteins2.1 g
Total Fats0.2 g
Fibers1.7 g
Calcium12 mg
Magnesium29 mg
Phosphorus65 mg
Iron0.4 mg
Potassium568 mg
Zinc0.3 mg
Vitamin B10.08 mg
Vitamin B60.11 mg

Vitamin C

5.6 mg

Source: Brazilian Table of Composition Food / Taco - version 2, UNICAMP

Yams are an important source of carbohydrates, but because of their significant amount of fiber, it does not It also has good amounts of vitamin C and B-complex vitamins (such as B1, B3, B5, B6, and B9), and it is also beneficial for people with diabetes who are looking for food re-education. . These vitamins are important for the body's functioning and also for the immune system's action.

Although it has a low fat content, yams are rich in mono-unsaturated fatty acids, which are important for reducing LDL cholesterol.

Benefits of yam

Turbine to body protection Yam is rich in vitamin C, which helps the immune system, since it participates in the formation of some antibodies in the body. In addition, this vitamin is antioxidant, which protects the body and organs from damage caused by free radicals. Vitamins E and B complex also help the immune system.

Heart Friend

Yam is rich in potassium, an important mineral for controlling blood pressure. When the person has hypertension, this eventually forces the heart to beat harder and harder to pump the blood efficiently, which can lead to more health problems in the future.

In addition, yams are rich in vitamin B6, a nutrient that reduces homocysteine ​​levels in the body, an amino acid found in heart attack victims. Yam - Photo: Getty Images

Female health aid

There are no human studies yet to prove these benefits, However some experts believe that the substance diosgenin contributes to the production of estrogen, a major female hormone. Thus, it could be used to help with hormone replacement therapies and also to reduce PMS symptoms, reducing cramps, irritability, bloating, headache and anxiety.

One benefit, however, is guaranteed: help relax the muscles, which is beneficial for colic. In addition, carbohydrates and vitamin B6 help in the production of serotonin, which reduces the common irritability of PMS.

Some people believe that diosgenin may also help improve a woman's fertility, but there are no studies to prove this. Can Prevent Cancer

Studies show that a diet packed with foods rich in antioxidants may be important for cancer prevention. And since yams contain good amounts of vitamin A and C, it falls into this category.

The importance of antioxidants is that they fight the action of free radicals in the body. These substances deplete various organs and can cause mutations in the DNA of cells that cause them to reproduce very rapidly, forming tumors.Recent studies have tested the efficacy of diosgenin in fighting cancer and have shown that they may be interesting against many types of tumors.

Good for diet Yams are high in fiber and considered a low glycemic index carbohydrate. This means that your carbohydrates are released more slowly into the bloodstream, preventing blood glucose spikes. Thus, insulin (the hormone that puts sugar into cells) is produced in lesser amounts, which saves the pancreas and also avoids the mechanism of fat storage in the abdomen. In addition, peaks of glycemia lead to very rapid falls, which trigger hunger more quickly. In other words, consuming high-fiber foods such as yams favors longer satiety, which prevents the intake of extra calories.

Recommended amount

Although yam is a healthy food, it is a source of carbohydrates and it can be caloric, having the ideal is to consume it in low quantity, with one serving a day.

How to consume

The ideal is to consume the cooked, roasted or steamed yam. Consuming it raw increases your allergenic potential. In addition, people with kidney stones should prefer to consume it cooked, as this reduces their levels of oxalic acid.

Compare yams with other foods

Raw yams (100 g)

Raw sweet potatoes ( 100 g)Raw potato (100 g)Raw cassava (100 g)Raw chew (100 g)Calories
97 kcal118 kcal64 kcal151 kcal96 kcalCarbohydrates
23.2 g28.2 g14.7 g30.1 g23 gProteins
2.1 g1.3 g1.8 g1.1 g2.3 gTotal fats
0.2 g0.1 g-0.3 g0.1 gFibers
1.7 g2.6 g1.2 g1.9 g7.3 gCalcium
12 mg21 mg4 mg15 mg4 mgMagnesium
29 mg17 mg15 mg44 mg11 mgPhosphorus
65 mg36 mg39 mg29 mg35 mgIron
0.4 mg0.4 mg0.4 mg0.3 mg0.2 mgPotassium
568 mg340 mg302 mg208 mg212 mgZinc
0.3 mg0.2 mg0.2 mg0.2 mg0.2 mgVitamin B1
0.08 mg0.06 mg0.1 mg-0 , 11 mgVitamin B6
0.11 mg0.10 mg0.15 mg0.04 mg0.02 mgVitamin C
Table 6: Food Composition / Taco Table - Version 2, Table 1 - Table 1 - UNICAMPYams are very similar to sweet potatoes, potatoes, manioc and. Comparing the five foods, we noticed that the potato is the one with the highest glycemic index, because it has less fibers in its composition. With this criterion, the best choice is yam, turmeric and sweet potatoes.In addition, although the potato has many more vitamins, its mineral amounts are lower.Ideally, the people can intercalate these tubers in their food, so that they can get the benefits and nutrients present in all.Yams RecipesSweet Potato Oven Gnocchi and Yams with Pesto of Watercress and Basil - Photo: Marcel Guzzoni /

Learn delicious recipes using yams:

Yam cheesecloth

Saint Peter cheesecloth with yam mash

Sweet potato omelette and pesto yam

Mayonnaise of yams with yams

Cream of yam and pumpkin

Yams in dried tomatoes

Yams cream

Risks of excess consumption

Consuming excess yams can lead to weight gain, due to its good amount of carbohydrates that increase the energy of the body. If it is not spent, it becomes fat, the way the body stores unused energy.

Contraindications of yam

Because it is not known how yams interfere with female hormones, some experts counteract it for pregnant women.

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