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Yams (Genus: Dioscorea), are edible tuber vegetables native to West Africa and Asia. There are about 200 different varieties and they all differ in shape, size and colour. Among all the varieties, the White yam (D. rotundata), Yellow yam (D. cayenensis), Chinese yam (D. polystachya), Southeast Asian yam (D. esculenta) and Cush-Cush yam,(D. trifoliate) species are the only commercially important ones.

Yam can be prepared in different forms depending upon tribe and cultural beliefs. It can be boiled, pounded, smoked, fried, baked, roasted, grilled and barbecued.

Here are the health benefits of yams:

1. Cures Skin Diseases & Respiratory Problems

Yam contains allantoin, a cell proliferant that is used to heal wounds (boils, ulcers and other skin diseases) and to speed up cell regeneration. It can also be used as remedy for bronchial irritation, cough and other respiratory problems.

2. Excellent Source of Manganese

Yams are a good source of manganese, a mineral that is needed for the enzymes superoxide dismutase that regulates thyroid function, blood sugar, and energy metabolism. Deficiency of manganese could lead to birth defects, general weakness, retarded growth and impaired fertility.

3. Source of Antioxidants

Yam contains antioxidants and anti-inflammatory properties. The beta carotene and Vitamin C in yam help to keep free radicals away. Free radicals causes damage to cells, DNA and protein and are associated with diseases like cancer, atherosclerosis, Alzheimer’s disease, among others. The antioxidants prevents damage caused by these free radicals.

Yam is also good for those suffering from arthritis and asthma.


4. Good Source of Energy

Yam is a good source of energy, a 3 ½ -oz (100 g) serving provides 116 calories. It contains complex carbohydrates and soluble dietary fiber which gradually slow the rate at which sugars are released and absorbed in the blood. Dietary fiber helps prevent constipation and decrease bad (LDL) cholesterol level.

5. Good Source of Vitamins

Yam is an excellent source of B complex vitamins like Vitamin B6, Vitamin B1, riboflavin, folic acid, pantothenic acid and niacin. It also contains a good amount of Vitamin C, A and Beta carotene. 

6. Prevents Cancer

The soluble dietary fiber in yams helps to ward off colon cancer by preventing toxic compounds in the food from clinging to the colon mucosa. Vitamin C in yam also provides protection from lung cancer, stomach cancer, mouth cancer and throat cancer.

7. Improve Heart Health

Yams are loaded with vitamin B6, which helps to break down homocysteine- an amino acid that may be associated with heart disease.

According to a study published in the America Journal of Clinical Nutrition, low levels of vitamin B6 may increase the risk of inflammation and metabolic conditions, and subsequently cardiovascular disease risk.

Health-Benefits of Eating Yam

8. Helps in RBC Production & Blood Flow

Yam contains Copper which is needed for the production of red blood cells and increased circulation of blood in the body. Yam also contains Iron which further perks up blood flow in the body.

9. Improves Digestion & Bowel Movements

Yams are a great source of dietary fiber which does help prevent constipation and as well contain a considerable amount of potassium which aids in healthy digestion and promotes good bowel movement.

10. Improves Brain Function

Yams are very rich in potassium- a mineral which supports the brain memory function. Your brain cannot perform optimally if starved of potassium for a long time.

According to a study, potassium has been found to increase in blood flow to the brain and optimal concentration, increased cognition and neural activity. Yam also contains folate which has been found to reduce the occurrence of Alzheimer’s disease.

 11. Good Vision

Yams are rich in vitamin C, which can strengthen your immune system and lower your risk of macular degeneration. Macular degeneration is the leading cause of permanent blindness and at present, it has no cure.

12. Weight Control

Yams are the best food to eat if you are watching your weight. This is because they are rich in dietary fiber which helps you to feel fuller and satisfied for a long time.

Next time you you are served a plate of yam, enjoy it with all your heart!

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Health Benefits of Eating Yam
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5 thoughts on “Health Benefits of Eating Yam

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  • 20/07/2017 at 12:56 pm

    Sexual violence in opposition to youngsters in Nigeria is
    on the rise, nevertheless, there may be an satisfactory statistic,
    because of the character of the crime and the tradition of silence that surrounds the difficulty.

    A survey carried out by UNICEF in 2015 disclosed that 4 in 10 ladies and
    one in 10 boys in Nigeria will expertise some type of sexual violence earlier than the age of 18.

    Mrs Juliet Obiora, programme coordinator, Motion In opposition to Little
    one Sexual Abuse Initiative (ACSAI) says “we suppose it might be extra. The work we do reveals a staggering variety of victims who’re nonetheless kids, and victims who at the moment are adults. Most of those circumstances go unreported. Research have continually proven that the majority youngster victims of sexual violence delay disclosing their abuse – typically for comparatively lengthy intervals of time.
    “While we can’t put an correct quantity to the statistics of
    baby sexual abuse, the day by day incidents reported within the media is greater than sufficient to spur
    fast motion.”
    Right this moment, what was a taboo and sacrilege is steadily assuming a nationwide unfold with on a regular basis prevalence of horrifying instances of fathers abusing their younger daughters, unabating instances of incest and rape of minors by these whom they’re stored of their care.
    Dr Biola Ayodele, a pediatrician mentioned that “Child abuse
    comes in numerous types; it’s a scenario the place an grownup
    makes use of the youngster for sexual stimulation or pleasure.” Dr Ayodele says that types of little one sexual abuse embrace asking or pressuring a baby to interact in sexual exercise; placing strain on the baby to carry out sexual acts.” Some adults
    he mentioned, simply needs to see the youngster genital for sexual pleasure, or they use the little one to make lewd motion pictures.
    These perverse behaviours, he stated has left so many
    youngsters depressed, and psychologically traumatized.

    Baby sexual abuse could trigger infections and sexually transmitted diseases.

    Relying on the age of the youngster. Resulting from a scarcity of
    enough vaginal fluid within the baby, possibilities of infections are larger.
    Little one sexual abuse can lead to each brief-time period and lengthy-time period hurt like psychopathology, put up-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety consuming
    disorder, shallowness, dissociative anxiety, disorder, somatization, neurosis.
    A number of the kids find yourself as substance abusers, and with different self-destructive behaviors.

    Psychologists say sexually abused kids undergo from psychological signs than non-abused youngsters.

    The danger of hurt within the youngster is claimed
    better if the abuser is a relative, and it includes intercourse or tried intercourse, or if threats or pressure are used.
    The extent of hurt could embrace penetration, duration and
    frequency of abuse, and use of pressure. Little one sexual abuse might
    trigger inside lacerations that lead to bleeding,
    sexually transmitted diseases or everlasting vaginal
    Analysis has proven that traumatic stress, together with
    stress attributable to sexual abuse, trigger notable adjustments in mind functioning and growth.
    Youngster sexual abuse could depart a long-lasting harm on the sufferer relying
    on the age and measurement of the little one,
    and the diploma of power used. In extreme
    circumstances, harm to inside organs could happen, which,
    in some instances, might trigger demise.
    David Isuwa, psychologist who’s a counsellor to abused youngsters informed our
    correspondent that “Pedophilia is the urge to have sexual desire for kids, whether or not boys or ladies. The standard pedophile is unable to seek out satisfaction in an grownup sexual relationship and will have low shallowness. Pedophilia is the act or fantasy on the a part of an grownup of partaking in sexual exercise with a toddler or youngsters.
    Isuwa says that “Sexual attraction towards kids dominates the
    pedophile’s life, typically inflicting the person to stay in concern of the attraction and
    in some circumstances inflicting the particular person to act on his or her urges.

    If a pedophile is pushed to sexual encounter, the encounter incessantly stops wanting intercourse,
    with the pedophile acquiring sexual gratification by way
    of fondling the youngster and generally via genital
    show alone.”
    Pedophiles he mentioned, “have impaired interpersonal functioning and elevated passive-aggressiveness, in addition to impaired self-idea.
    Pedophiles use cognitive distortions to satisfy private wants, justifying abuse by making excuses, redefining their actions as love
    and mutuality, and exploiting the ability imbalance inherent
    in all grownup-youngster relationships. Most grownup victims of youngster molestation battle with
    depression, low shallowness or self-hatred,
    Substance abuse, alcoholism and suicidal behaviour,
    anxiety and panic disorders.”
    Others he mentioned, “can find yourself with complications,
    gastrointestinal issues and asthma, insomnia, obesity and different consuming disorders, in addition to self-damage conduct.
    Psychologically, others are inclined to have flashbacks instantly they
    odor one thing that triggers and produce again reminiscences of the abuse.
    The social stigma of baby sexual abuse could compound the psychological hurt in kids.

    “Child sexual abuse, has been discovered to be associated to the event of excessive ranges of dissociative signs, which incorporates amnesia or loss recollections, little one sexual abuse usually happens in poor household surroundings.
    In accordance Isuwa, a number of the elements that flip folks into pedophiles “could be childhood abuse, web-proliferated
    pornography, depression, anxiety disorders, substance
    abuse disorders, bipolar disorder, low vanity, emotional immaturity, inside dysphonia, isolation or loneliness, and antisocial character disorder.
    The distinction between pedophiles and intercourse offenders
    is that, the pedophile doesn’t need to or intend to harm youngsters however intercourse offenders make the deliberate resolution to assault youngsters not minding the implications.
    Pedophiles understandably attempt to separate themselves from being labeled
    intercourse offenders.”Isuwa says that “It isn’t simple to deal with a pedophile
    as a result of it might imply surgical castration, or removing of male testes, typically decrease testosterone ranges or medicine might be given to decrease the libido.
    They may be handled via cognitive behavioural therapy,
    behavioural interventions or using treatment to decrease the sexual libido
    of the grownup like Depo-Provera, Lupron.
    A retired secondary college principal, Mrs. Agnes Tanko who
    spoke to our correspondent acknowledged that motion in colleges is
    significant for lowering sexual and different types of violence.
    In accordance with her, “children from main college have to be taught about intercourse and the way to guard themselves from sexual abuse. It’s as a result of they don’t know, that’s the reason such evil individuals benefit from them.”
    Youngster sexual abuse, she says contains “sexual assault, sexual exploitation or sexual grooming which includes the potential youngster intercourse offender grooming his would-be sufferer to be extra accepting of his advances.”
    Phillip Bauta, a authorized practitioner and little one proper campaigner acknowledged that
    “Nigeria is a signatory to some legal guidelines and charter on proper of the youngster and the Criminal Code has a variety of offences meant for the safety of the youngster and the preservation of his or her dignity. Our drawback is that, we don’t implement them after which dad and mom are inclined to shrink back from reporting these offenders. Sexual molestation is a severe offence due to the stigma and psychological trauma it leaves on the little one.
    “Section 30 supplies that “A individual below the age of seven years isn’t criminally answerable for any act or omission and that, an individual beneath the age of twelve years is presumed to be incapable of getting carnal information.” That is elaborated in Chapter 21 of the Criminal Code coping with offences in opposition to morality
    contained particular provisions for the safety of the youngster and preservation of the dignity
    of his particular person. Underneath Part 216 any one who unlawfully and indecently offers with a boy beneath the age of
    14 years is responsible of a felony, and is liable to imprisonment for
    seven years. Comparable indecent practices between males entice imprisonment for
    3 years underneath Part 217.
    “Section 221 prescribes two years imprisonment for anyone who has or makes an attempt to have unlawful carnal data of a lady who’s thirteen years or above however under sixteen years of age and Part 222 says, unlawful and indecent coping with a lady beneath the age of thirteen years attracts imprisonment for 3 years however the place the woman is thirteen years and above however beneath sixteen years, the punishment of the offender is 2 years imprisonment. That very same Part 222a says whoever, having the custody, cost or care of a woman below the age of sixteen years, causes or encourages the seduction, unlawful carnal data or prostitution of, or the fee of an indecent assault upon such a woman, is liable to imprisonment for 2 years. Procurement of a woman beneath the age of eighteen years to have unlawful carnal reference to every other individual or individuals, both in Nigeria or elsewhere attracts imprisonment for 2 years for the offender.
    “Similarly, Part 225 prescribes two years imprisonment for an offender who abducts a woman below eighteen years of age
    with intent to have her to be unlawfully carnally recognized by any man.”
    The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Youngster (CRC) is a global treaty that legally obliges states to guard children’s rights. Articles 34 and 35 of the CRC require states to guard youngsters from all types of sexual exploitation and sexual abuse. These embrace outlawing the coercion of a baby to carry out sexual exercise, the prostitution of youngsters, and the exploitation of youngsters in creating pornography. States are additionally required to stop the abduction, sale, or trafficking of kids. As of November 2008, 193 nations are certain by the CRC, together with each member of the United Nations besides the United States and Somalia.


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