A tuber with yamazing benefits

If going by the outer appearance is a criterion for you to pick veggies off the supermarket shelves, then there aren’t many chances for elephant foot yam.

Published: 17th February 2021 06:16 AM  |   Last Updated: 17th February 2021 06:16 AM   |  A+A-

By Express News Service

CHENNAI: If going by the outer appearance is a criterion for you to pick veggies off the supermarket shelves, then there aren’t many chances for elephant foot yam. Raised as a cash crop, it is named so because of its transversal structure and resemblance with elephant’s foot.

This pinkish-brown coloured tuber crop wears a stony and hard appearance. A tropical tuber crop, this yam is grown primarily in Africa, South Asia, Southeast Asia and the tropical Pacific islands. While it may not impress you with the rustic, uneven and muddy outer skin, the host of health benefits that come along with the multi-purpose tuber deserves a mention.

Speaking about the significance and methods of preparing the root vegetable, PV Lakshmi , chief dietic ian, Gleneagles Global Health City, shares, “Tubers need to be a part of your everyday diet. Elephant foot yam may be hard to peel and chop.

The vegetable also leaves an itchy after-taste if not washed and soaked properly. But if you figure out the right way to cook it then you can make an array of items with it. From lowering your cholesterol level to taking care of the functioning of the heart, not to forget the numerous health properties.”

Rich in minerals
It contains high percentages of your daily value of fibre, potassium, and manganese. These nutrients and minerals are key to maintaining your bone health, heart health, growth, and metabolism.

Immune booster
This yam also contains copper and vitamin C. Copper is essential for your blood health. More specifically, copper is key for healthy iron absorption and red blood cell production. Meanwhile, vitamin C is a vital antioxidant that can strengthen your immune system against illnesses and infections.

Eases digestion
The elephant foot yam contains resistant starches, which act similar to soluble fibres. A resistant starch essentially passes through your stomach and small intestine, undigested. From there, it eventually reaches your colon and feeds your healthy gut bacteria while also increasing your digestive enzymes.

Improves cholesterol levels
It plays a major role in controlling your cholesterol levels as it provides a special type of soluble fibre, which is cholesterol’s worst nightmare. Soluble fibre essentially works by circulating around cholesterol, binding to it and removing it from the body.

Cancer-fighting properties
In addition to many vital vitamins and minerals, this yam also has antioxidants that may prevent cancer.

Alleviates inflammation
Chronic inflammation is connected to long-term health conditions like diabetes, obesity and heart disease. Fortunately, yam is rich in anti-inflammatory antioxidants.

Healthy heart
A big part of keeping the heart healthy is maintaining healthy sodium levels in your bloodstream. Yam promotes heart health by getting rid of any excess sodium in your body. In turn, it reduces the risk of developing long-term illnesses like hypertension, heart attack and stroke.

Good for skin and hair
It is rich in special antioxidants that can help with rebuilding cells, fight free radicals and premature ageing in your skin. The combination of collagen and vitamin C provided by the yam aids in healing skin-related wounds.

Helps with weight loss
The root of the yam provides a beneficial fibre known as glucomannan, which is thought to help with weight loss. Essentially, when consumed, the fibre can turn into a gel that sits in your stomach and allows you to feel full for longer. As a result, you curb your cravings and weight loss is achievable.

Nutrients per 100 g
Protein: 2.6 g
Fat: 0.14 g
Vitamin C: 15 mg
Niacin: 0.61 mg
Carbohydrates: 18-20 g
Calories: 85 Kcal
Calcium: 50 mg
Phosphorus: 34 mg
Fibre: 4.5 g
Minerals: 0.8 g
Iron: 0.8 g

Yam raita

Yam: 1 (peeled, boiled
and mashed)
Fresh curd: 1 cup
Rock salt to taste
Sugar: 1 1/2 cup
Green chilli paste: 1/2 cup
Black pepper: 1/2 tsp
(freshly ground)
Chopped coriander: 2 tsp

Combine all ingredients in a
bowl and mix well.
Refrigerate for an hour.
Serve it cold.


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