Sweet Potatoes Vs Yams: Whats The Difference?
Sweet Potatoes vs Yams: Whats the Difference? Written by Mary Jane Brown, PhD, RD (UK) on September 21, 2017 The terms sweet potato and yam are often used interchangeably, causing a lot of confusion. While both are underground tuber vegetables, they are actually very different. They belong to different plant families and are only distantly related. So why all the confusion? This article explains the key differences between sweet potatoes and yams. Sweet potatoes, also known by the scientific name Ipomoea batatas, are starchy root vegetables. They are thought to originate in Central or South America, but North Carolina is currently the largest producer ( 1 ). Surprisingly, sweet potatoes are only remotely related to potatoes . Like a regular potato, the tuberous roots of the sweet potato plant are eaten as a vegetable. Their leaves and shoots are also sometimes eaten as greens. However, sweet potatoes are a very distinctive-looking tuber. They are long and tapered with a smooth skin that can vary in color, ranging from yellow, orange, red, brown or purple to beige. Depending on the type, the flesh can range from white to orange to even purple. There are two main types of sweet potatoes: Dark-Skinned, Orange-Fleshed Sweet Potatoes Compared to golden-skinned sweet potatoes, these are softer and sweeter with a darker, copper-brown skin and bright orange flesh. They tend to be fluffy and moist and are commonly found in the US. Golden-Skinned, Pale-Fleshed Sweet Potatoes This version is firmer with a golden skin and light yellow flesh. It tends to have a drier texture and is less sweet than dark-skinned sweet potatoes. Regardless of the type, sweet potatoes are generally sweeter and moister than regular potatoes. They are an extremely robust vegetable. Their long shelf life Continue reading >>
Food That Is Good For Diabetic Patients In Nigeria - By Josiah Akinsoji
FOOD THAT IS GOOD FOR DIABETIC PATIENTS IN NIGERIA - By JOSIAH AKINSOJI The greatest challenge faced by diabetic patients in Nigeria is what kind of food they can eat that will not raise their blood glucose level especially that most of their staple food contain very high level of carbohydrate. For example, eba (made from cassava powder), pounded yam (made from yam powder called iyan in yoruba tribe), and white rice are extraordinarily very high in carbohydrate. Eating eba or drinking gari, its powder form or pounded yam which most people in the country eat more often than one time a day could potentially but easily send a diabetic patient into diabetic coma due to hyperglycemia, if a person is unaware of the damage this kind of food can cause. And that is the issue this piece of writing will dwell on addressing. It is advisable for all diabetic patients in Nigeria to take a concerted efforts to stay away from eating eba, drinking gari, eating iyan, and white rice; but the question is, what other food, source of carbonhydrate is available to them as substitute? The answer is stated below : PLANTAIN POWDER could be used to make what yoruba called AMALA. WHEAT FLOWER (not adulterated mixed with other stuff), BROWN RICE instead of white if available in the country. OGI (made from oka baba) is better than the regular OGI Not that the above carbonhydrate food source do not raise blood glucose level yes, they do but minimal, and will help you to let your medication work very well, and will not require too much amount of drugs to put your bood glucose level under control. Since protein source could be derived from both animal and sea food, it is strongly advisable for the patient to abstain from eating animal protein source such as cow meat, goat meat, and etc. instead eat se Continue reading >>
11 Superfoods For Your Diabetes Diet
Getty Images What to Eat to Beat Type 2 Diabetes What makes a food “super”? When it comes to type 2 diabetes, it’s not just about foods that pack lots of nutrients. For a diabetes-friendly diet, you also need foods that will help keep your blood sugar levels in check. “Look for items that contain healthy fats and are high in vitamins, minerals, and fiber,” says Sue McLaughlin, RD, a certified diabetes educator at Burgess Health Center in Onawa, Iowa. It’s also crucial to eat a wide variety of foods to make sure you’re getting a healthy mix of phytochemicals and essential fatty acids. Add these 11 superfoods to your grocery cart to keep your diet diabetes-friendly. Continue reading >>
Jamaican Yam - Simply Nutritious And Delicious!
1 2 By Marsha N. Woolery, Healthy Eating & Diet Yam, a starchy root, is a favourite food in most Jamaican homes and even for those in the diaspora who are willing to pay a big price for a taste of this simple yet delicious food item. There are different varieties of yam, and they all have a unique taste, flavour and texture. Some are dry, some waxy, some soft, and the sweet yam- mmmmmm (mainly available a little before and after the Christmas season) - is even softer. Might I add that the latter is my favourite; soft and so delicious when mashed with ... - I will not disclose - it is a heavenly experience. In the Caribbean, yam is in the staples food group because the main nutrient provided is carbohydrates. Yam provides the body with: fibre, starch and sugar potassium protein vitamins B1 (thiamin), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B6 (pyridoxine), folic acid, and pantothenic acid. These vitamins help us to get energy from carbohydrates and fat. Yam is referred to as a complex carbohydrates food source because, in addition to the starch and sugar that provide energy, yam has soluble and insoluble fibre. Four ounces of cooked yam provides 80 to 100 kilocalories and four grams of fibre. There is more soluble fibre present in yam than insoluble, which makes it easy to digest and is a suitable food for young children. The fibre in yam: Slows the release of sugar or glucose from the blood into the cells. For this reason, persons with diabetes should consume yam to achieve better blood sugar control. Increases satiety or makes the person feel full for a longer period of time. Yam is a recommended food for persons who are trying to lose or maintain weight because they will feel hungry less often. Reduces the risk of being constipated (hard bound), because fibre increases bulk in Continue reading >>
Starch And Root Vegetables And Diabetes
There are a whole range of root vegetables and most of them are also starches – a type of carbohydrate. Basically, some plants store glucose as starch – giant chains of sugars. So when it comes to root vegetables and starches, are they safe for type 2 diabetics to eat or not? Well, let's dig in and explore the facts. Root Vegetables Nutrition Facts As you can see the veggies from swede up are relatively low in carbs, while the ones downwards are high in carbs – potatoes being the highest. Glycemic Index of Root Veggies Glymeic index (GI) is a valid measure for higher carb foods but just remember the amount of carbs you eat is the most important thing that influences blood sugar and A1C. GI is a measure of how fast different food affects blood sugar levels. Anything below 55 is considered a low GI and anything above that is considered high GI. The lower the GI the better it's going to be for you if you're diabetic, the higher…well the worse it is. Health Hubs sums it up well: “Root vegetables and tubers are relatively concentrated sources of sugars and starches and tend to contain only small amounts of fiber. This can be problematic for diabetics because they can produce a large glycemic response in situations when they are not combined with high fiber foods…The lowest GI vegetables are yams, carrots and sweet potatoes with GI values of 38, 47 and 55 respectively. High GI root vegetables include potatoes (GI of 60-90), parsnip (97), rutabaga (71), and beets (65).” As you can see, yams and carrots are really your best 2 options here, followed by a small amount of sweet potato on the odd occasion. BUT, that's only when it comes to GI levels – you still have to keep the amount of carbs in mind. If you eat raw carrots it lowers their GI even more, down to jus Continue reading >>
Is Yam Good For Diabetes
Basically, no yams are grown in the United States. What is referred to as yams in the United States is basically a type of sweet potato. Real yams originated from Africa and are sold. On the other hand, sweet potatoes were natively grown in South America with some of it being grown in the USA. Yams help maintain controlled blood sugar levels whereas sweet potatoes increase the blood sugar levels. Effects of sweet potatoes and yams on blood sugar levels Yams and sweet potatoes contain carbohydrates. After consuming these carbohydrates they are broken down into sugar that is then absorbed into the bloodstream with a potential to cause a post mean a spike in the blood sugar levels. Generally, this should not be a problem since the body should be in a position to produce insulin to counter this effect. There is a problem when your body cells are resistant to the effects of insulin resistance. A continued spike in the blood sugar levels can eventually lead to a heart attack and kidney problems. Rating on the glycemic index Glycemic index is a scale rated from 0-100 and is used to show how a certain food substance causes a rise in the blood sugar levels. Pure glucose is rated 100. Sweet potatoes have a glycemic index of 70 which is considered high. On the other hand, yams have a glycemic index of 54 which is relatively low. The carbs count Basically, if what you consider is the total carbohydrates in a meal as a diabetic, then you might get everything wrong. Sweet potatoes have 26.58 grams of carbohydrates whereas the same serving of yams has 41.22 grams of carbohydrates. Given that yams have a glycemic index of 54 and sweet potatoes a glycemic index of 70, it would be expected that yams will have a higher glycemic index but this is not the case. Yams have 5.8 grams of solubl Continue reading >>
Can I Eat Sweet Potatoes If I Have Diabetes?
Many cases of diabetes, especially type 1 diabetes, come from problems with the ability of the pancreas to regulate insulin, which is important in controlling blood sugar. The pancreas-shaped sweet potato helps to balance blood sugar in diabetics. Research shows that sweet potatoes contain adiponectin, the same hormones that are released from fat cells. Adiponectin tends to improve metabolism and insulin regulation. Unlike other starchy vegetables, sweet potatoes are considered to be an “anti-diabetic food.” This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com Yes diabetics can eat sweet potatoes. Sweet potatoes contain carbohydrates which can raise blood sugar levels. However if you eat the right serving size of a sweet potato you can control the amount of sugar you take in. Also what you put on the potato is important. Avoid added sugars or sweeteners. Absolutely! Sweet potatoes are perfect for any plate but especially for people with diabetes. Compared to white potatoes, sweet potatoes are lower on the glycemic index and deliver chart topping vitamin A for eye health. The fiber helps with blood glucose control and weight management and the potassium helps control blood pressure. One important note... Take care to prepare your sweet potatoes without all of the added sugar, butter or marshmallows that many recipes call for. Go beyond the norm and try sweet potatoes roasted, mashed or even pureed into soup. One sweet potato contains 26 grams of carbs, but that’s partially offset by the 4 grams of fiber. Sweet potatoes contain healthy phytochemicals, too. One idea is to eat just half a sweet potato (topped with butter rather than sugar) and pair it with a protein food. Continue reading >>
Are Sweet Potatoes Or Yams Good For Blood Sugar?
You may be surprised to find out there is no relationship between sweet potatoes and yams. Although often confused, yams relate closer to lilies and grass than to sweet potatoes, and sweet potatoes are more like the morning glory flower. It is no wonder then that these two veggies can affect your blood sugar differently. Video of the Day When you try to determine how a certain food will affect your blood sugar, consider its glycemic index value. The glycemic index is a method to determine how a food will raise your blood glucose. Foods receive a score that compares their effect to pure glucose. Scores range from zero to 100, the higher the score, the larger and more rapid the effect. The Glycemic Index rates the impact of starches on your blood sugar levels. Raw food contains starch stored in compact granules, which makes it difficult to digest. Cooking releases the starch and makes it easier to digest -- and to elevate your blood sugar levels. Foods with a low GI rating, from zero to 55, contain slowly digested starches. A moderate GI index rating is 56 to 69. A high GI rating, between 70 and 100, indicates foods containing quickly digested starches, the ones that cause blood sugar spikes and crashes. According to the University of Sydney, depending on preparation, the GI ratings for sweet potatoes are 44 to 94, while yams rank 35 to 77. The lower ratings apply to one-cup servings of boiled sweet potatoes, which rate 44, and one-cup servings of boiled yams, which rank 35. The highest GI rating of 94 applies to sweet potatoes peeled and baked for 45 minutes. Yams peeled and roasted on preheated charcoal get a high rating of 77. Eating With Diabetes All of this information should lead you to believe that both yams and sweet potatoes are good for your blood sugar. Althoug Continue reading >>
I Have Diabetes…what Can I Eat?
From the day you are diagnosed with diabetes, type 1 or type 2, everyone around you is going start telling you what you can and cannot eat. Your doctor, friends, brother, mother, father, uncle, children, spouse, and even the television and every magazine and newspaper! (Be wary of the all the diet fads that will not be directed right at you!) By the time you’ve heard it all, you might feel like there’s nothing you’re allowed to eat except for steamed chicken and spinach. Here are three secrets for your life with diabetes around food: Despite what everyone is saying you “can’t” and “shouldn’t” eat, you are the one who puts the food in your mouth…which means you actually can eat anything, in a sense. It is your choice, and while we all would be better if we always chose the healthiest foods, try reminding yourself of this statement: “I can choose to eat whatever I want.” Thinking this way around your choices versus feeling like you aren’t allowed to eat practically anything can be a very helpful tool for feeling more empowered around food. No one can control what you eat except for you. It’s your choice. As people with diabetes, we do want to aim for 70 to 90 percent of the day’s choices to be very healthy, moderate to low in carbohydrates, and whole food choices, but you do not have to be perfect! Enjoying a treat (whether it’s potato chips or chocolate) in moderation is possible, but the key is moderation. Sometimes, putting too many rules around those treats can make us want more and more of them, which is why the way you think about food is going to very important for how you behave around food. Think about the treats you love the most and how to incorporate them carefully and in sensible portions in your week’s nutrition. Never stop Continue reading >>
The Big Secret About Sweet Potatoes That Nobody Wants You To Know
You and I have been lied to. I don’t know why, and I don’t even know if it’s on purpose, but it pisses me off. And here’s why I’m annoyed… As of 2014, 29 MILLION people in the US had Diabetes (type 2), and 86 MILLION people were pre-diabetic. That’s over 105 MILLION people who have problems with insulin sensitivity and blood sugar. And my dad and my mother-in-law fall into those categories – my dad’s been type 2 diabetic for over a decade, and my mother-in-law has been pre-diabetic for about the same amount of time. So this particular issue hits very close to home (literally) for me – and presumably for almost anybody in the US, since you almost certainly know a few people who are at least pre-diabetic. The Myth About Sweet Potatoes… Everyone (from doctors, to medical researchers, to even the American Diabetes Association) seems to unanimously state that sweet potatoes are unequivocally great for diabetics (please note that when I mention diabetes in this article, I’m referring to type 2 diabetes). If you don’t believe me, here are just a few examples: And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Even on websites that supposedly pay attention to blood-sugar and glycemic load issues, sweet potatoes are almost always classified as a “better” food than things like white potatoes. Unfortunately…It’s All Completely Untrue! Listen. I’m not bashing sweet potatoes. Entire cultures have lived very healthily on sweet potatoes. I eat sweet potatoes myself. But I also have pretty good insulin sensitivity. It’s like this. Fish is pretty darn nutritious, and almost everybody agrees. But if you’re allergic to fish, you shouldn’t be eating it. It’s pretty simple. So the question is whether sweet potatoes are a problem for people with blood sugar Continue reading >>
Yams Vs. Sweet Potatoes: Yes, There Is A Difference
(Yams) If you’re like me, at first glance you can’t tell the difference between a yam and a sweet potato. They both are orange on the inside and both taste great in a pie or mashed or in a casserole. Even though they may look the same, technically, they’re two different vegetables–especially how your body digests them. Yams sold in the United States are actually a type of sweet potato. Sweet potatoes originated in South America and are grown in the United States. True yams are native to Africa and are seldom sold in your local grocery store. The two potatoes also do not share similar carbohydrate profiles. As a result, sweet potatoes boost blood sugar, while yams help keep it balanced. After you eat sweet potatoes and yams, their carbohydrates are Join the conversation and share this story digested into simple sugars that enter your bloodstream, causing a post-meal boost in blood sugar. For most people, this isn’t a problem because insulin escorts sugar into cells, which returns blood levels to normal. However, if you have health conditions that interfere with normal secretion or use of insulin — insulin resistance, prediabetes or diabetes — your body struggles to … …remove the extra sugar and blood levels remain high. Over time, high blood sugar may cause kidney disease and heart attacks, according to the American Diabetes Association. If you only look at total carbohydrates you might think the glycemic scores are wrong. You’ll get 26.58 grams of total carbohydrates from a 150-gram serving of sweet potatoes. The same portion of yams has 41.22 grams of total carbohydrates–nearly double the amount! In spite of their higher carb content, yams have a smaller impact on blood sugar thanks to containing more fiber and less sugar. Sweet potatoes have 12 t Continue reading >>
Yam: The Tuber For Weight Loss And Fight Against Diabetes
A not so commonly-eaten vegetable, yam is a starchy tropical tuber high on carbohydrates. It is like potatoes and sweet potatoes, though not be confused with either. Loaded with nutrients specially fibre, yam has made it to the list of foods suited for management of weight, diabetes and blood cholesterol levels. Native to Africa and Asia, yam is commonly known as zimicand in India. Several varieties of yam are available. In Indian traditional medicine, the tuber is used as an aphrodisiac and antidiabetic. The nature of carbohydrates in yam differ from that of potatoes. Its high fibre content contributes to a glycemic index of 54, significantly lower than that of potatoes having a glycemic index of 80. This makes yam better suited for weight watchers, diabetics and those with heart disease as it does not create sharp increase in insulin response. A 2013 animal study in the British Journal of Medicine and Medical Research reported that intake of yam extract led to reduced food intake, blood glucose level and body weight. The benefits of yam go beyond this. Several varieties of yam contain steroids (hormone like substances) and alkaloids, plant substances that possess powerful physiological effects. Some of them have also been used to prepare oral contraceptives and medicines for arthritis. Yam has, interestingly, also been used to treat menopausal symptoms. A 2005 study in the Journal of American College of Nutrition investigated the effects of yam intake on lipids, antioxidant status, and sex hormones in 24 healthy postmenopausal women. The women replaced their staple food (rice for the most part) with 390 g of yam in 2 of 3 meals per day for 30 days. Researchers observed that intake of yam led to increased serum concentrations of estrogen and decreased cholesterol level Continue reading >>
What Are Yams Good For?
While yams appear very similar to sweet potatoes , they're quite different. In fact, they're not even related. Yams belong to the Dioscoreae or morning glory family, while sweet potatoes are from the genus Convolvulaceae. Yams (from the African word "nyami," meaning "to eat") have only one embryonic seed leaf, while sweet potatoes have two. Yams are grown throughout Africa, but Nigeria is the worlds most prolific producer, exporting to 70% of the world market. Close to 200 species of yams are eaten worldwide, but other than those found wrapped individually in supermarkets, they aren't easily found on American produce shelves. Popular varieties include Hawaiian yam, Korean yam, and sweet yam. Compared to sweet potatoes, yams are usually longer sometimes as long as several feet and not as sweet, having a rough, dark orange or brown surface that looks like tree bark. They're usually harvested after a year of vine growth, dried for several hours in a barn ventilated for that purpose, after which they can be stored without refrigeration for several weeks. Yam varieties are classified as either "firm" or "soft." When cooked, the former are more dense; the latter varieties become more tender and moist. Preparations can be as vast the varieties, including boiling, mashing, grilling, roasting, baking, or sauting. Yams should never be refrigerated until they're cooked. Leftovers should be wrapped, refrigerated, and eaten within a few days. Although they're considered to be a starchy vegetable, yams are made up of complex carbohydrates and dietary fiber allowing for slow uptake to keep blood sugar levels even, giving it the nod as a low glycemic index food. The vitamin A that is converted into beta-carotene when eating yams isn't as spectacular as those in sweet potatoes, butthe Continue reading >>
Yam Vs. Sweet Potato: Which One's Healthier (and What's The Difference)?
The subject who is truly loyal to the Chief Magistrate will neither advise nor submit to arbitrary measures. The question: What's the difference between yams and sweet potatoes? Is one healthier for you? The answer: The terms yam and sweet potato are often used interchangeably in grocery stores. But they are two different starchy vegetables that deliver different nutrient profiles. In most cases, the "yams" sold in grocery stores are actually orange-coloured sweet potatoes. The sweet potato is related to the morning glory family; it has orange flesh and its skin can be white, yellow, orange or purple. Sometimes it's shaped like a potato and sometimes it's longer and tapered at both ends. Yams belong to the lily family. The colour of their flesh varies from ivory to yellow to purple. They're long and cylindrical, and their skin has a rough and scaly texture. While sweet potatoes are readily available in grocery stores, yams aren't. If you're looking for yams and your grocery store doesn't carry them, try an international food market that carries Caribbean or African foods. But when it comes to nutrition, sweet potatoes score much higher. Compared with yams, sweet potatoes are lower in calories and have far more beta-carotene (11.5 compared with 0.07 milligrams for each one-half cup), an antioxidant nutrient thought to guard against certain cancers. There is no official recommended intake for beta-carotene but experts contend that consuming three to six milligrams daily will maintain blood levels in the range that's associated with a lower risk of chronic diseases. One-half cup of sweet potato supplies double that amount. Sweet potatoes also have a lower glycemic index number than yams, meaning their carbohydrate is released more slowly into the bloodstream. This doesn't Continue reading >>
Are Sweet Potatoes Or Yams Good For Blood Sugar?
Although most of the calories in both sweet potatoes and yams come from carbs, they're still good food choices, even if you’re working hard at maintaining normal blood sugars. These starchy root vegetables are rich in fiber, which helps with blood sugar control. They're also low-glycemic carbs, so can be enjoyed on a diabetic diet, as long as you watch your portion size. Sweet Potato vs. Yams In the United States, most consumers consider sweet potatoes and yams the same food. But sweet potatoes and yams are two totally different root vegetables from different families. In fact, when you think you’re getting "yams" at the grocery store, you’re actually buying sweet potatoes. A true yam has a dark brown skin that looks like tree bark and flesh that’s either white, purple or red, not orange. Nutrition in Sweet Potatoes and Yams Nutritionally, both sweet potatoes and yams are low in calories, fat-free and high in carbs. A 1/2-cup serving of baked sweet potato has 90 calories, 20 grams of carbs, and 3 grams of fiber. The same serving of yams has 80 calories, 19 grams of carbs, and 3 grams of fiber. But the sweet potato is a slightly better source of most vitamins and minerals, including vitamin C, potassium and magnesium. Plus, the sweet potato is way higher in beta-carotene. Glycemic Index of the Root Vegetables Both sweet potatoes and yams have a low glycemic index, or GI. The glycemic index ranks carbohydrates on a scale of 0 to 100 on how they affect blood sugar. Foods with a low GI digest more slowly and release sugar gradually into the bloodstream, keeping blood sugar steady. In addition to helping maintain even blood sugar levels, eating more low-GI foods like these root vegetables may help lower your risk of type 2 diabetes, improve heart health and make it e Continue reading >>