These are underground stems that produce vines that are climbers. Some have spines on the vines that are run round the stakes or stick clockwise. Some of the varieties, like water yam (dioscorea alata) are spineless.
Sources of yam soup recipe
Yam soup recipe could be prepared from several yam specie.Wild yam, dioscorea villosa has thorns as roots which act as defense mechanism against wild animals harvesting it. It is a twig like cultivated yam that supports itself by twinning around a stalk or tree
Usually, yam takes 6-8 months to mature from the time of planting. There are many varieties of yams including the following
- Dioscorea rotundata white yam
- Dioscorea cayenesis yellow yam
- Dioscorea alata water yam
- Dioscorea dometorum yellow yam but must be cooked overnight
- Dioscorea bulbifera Chinese yam
Nutritional value of yam
Yams have a large store of carbohydrates with little proteins, about 2-4 % while the bulk is carbohydrates over 90%. The mineral content of yam is very high including iron, manganese, silicon, phosphorous, potassium. The vitamins are mostly vitamins A and B. The yellow yam Dioscorea Cayennesis is especially high in vitamin B complex and vitamin A.
The chemical properties of wild yams include, steroidal saponins, tannins, phytosterols, alkaloids starch, diosgenin, etc
Health benefits of yam
This depends on the varieties
- Aphrodisiac properties
The wild yam which is a sub variety of white yam is the wild ancestor of white yam. The vines are very spinouts and so also are the roots. These are ecological or biological defense mechanisms to protect the yam from being consumed by wild animals,
The tuber which is actually an underground stem contains some saponnins and some testosterone like substances that are responsible for its aphrodisiac properties in man. The small tubers which weigh up to 500gm on the average can be cooked and eaten with groundnuts or with palm oil for effectiveness. It is very effective against impotence. No matter how bad it is, if the treatment is continued for up to a month, the man will smile.
The iron content of this wild yam may be implicated for its efficaciousness as an aphrodisiac. The high content of saponnins in wild yams has not been investigated. It can also be eaten with pepper soup made from any source.
The trifoliate yam, dioscorea dometorum with yellow flesh and brownish skin is very high in the active ingredient called dioscogin. When eaten partially cooked, it leads to abortion in pregnant women. If not controlled, it can be lethally posinous
- High vitamins A and B content
For the yellow yams Dioscorea cayenis and Dioscorea dometorum, the yellow colour is carotenoid which is a precursor of vitamin A. Apart from supplying adequate vitamin A to the body which is good for resistance to infections, prevention of night blindness and overall good health, the yellow yams are also specially high in vitamin B complex which is another key vitamin that is very vital in the physiology of the human body including blood circulation, heart problems, as well as neurological conditions.
The carotenoids are also powerful antioxidants that help to ward off free radicals in the body and therefore ensure good health.
- Good source of fiber
Yams are generally good source of crude fibers or roughages, which are so vital for good health. The crude fiber content and indeed, the overall nutritional and medical quality of yams are greatly enhanced if one consumes the yams with the back or skin, which should be thoroughly washed and cooked and eaten like that. The skin is particularly very high in mineral and vitamins
- Food for diabetics
The glycemic index (GI) of water yam I very low and the carbohydrate in it is a special one that does not easily increase blood glucose as it is converted to glucose gradually and slowly. Again, to enhance its nutritional and medicinal value greatly, the yam should be cooked and eaten with the skin. Diabetics can eat this yam without increasing their blood glucose level gradually. The water yam can also be made into porridge with bitter leaves or cassava leaves, or fluted pumpkin leaves. This is a wonderful food for diabetics
- Circulatory health condition
Eating yellow yams or water yams and Chinese yam, tend to have beneficial effects on cardiovascular health, including maintenance of blood pressure within acceptable limits. This mechanism for achieving this has not been fully known, but it seems that high crude fiber contents and the antioxidants have great role to play in this situation. The very active ingredients and crude fibers also help in the reduction of bad cholesterol. Low density lipoprotein is the crude fibers that bind the lipoprotein molecules for expulsion through defecation
- Urinary Tract Infection
It is helpful in curing urinary tract infections and painful urination. The rhizome and the root should be boiled overnight and the decoction taken with rhizome.
- Contraceptive for women
Until very recently, wild yam was the only raw material for the manufacturing of steroidal hormone used as contraceptive pill by women.
Ingredients for yam soup recipe
- 5 cloves of garlic
- 5 tablespoon onions minced
- 3 tablespoons prated ginger
- 3 leaves of bay leaf
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon lime juice
- Cherry tomatoes, sliced
- 4 cups of mushrooms
- 2 teaspoon chili oil
- Coconut milk
Peel, wash and cut stock. Put the stock into cooking pot and heat to medium state. Add lemon grass
Add garlic, onion, ginger, bay leaves, lime juice, soy sauce, with carrots. Reduce heat slightly, cover, and continue lightly boiling 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and boil for another 5 minutes.
Add tomatoes. Cook 3 minutes and add coconut milk .Discard the bay leaves and serve