One of the staple meals in a typical Nigerian home is Yam. If it is not pounded, then it is boiled, fried, roasted or baked. Whatever the case maybe, we love yam, we grow yam and we eat yam steadily.
Yam is a starchy staple grown in different parts of the world such as in Africa, Asia, America, Caribbean and South Pacific. West and Central Africa are the major producers of yam. It will interest you to know that Nigeria is the world’s largest producer of yams with over 90% production rate. It is believed that yam production in Africa began over 11,000 years ago. And we are no where getting tired of consuming it.
Yams are grown by planting small tubers or pieces of yams into the ground. They are rich in carbohydrates, vitamin c, minerals and fiber. As already mentioned yam can be eaten in a number of ways depending on how you prepare it.
Our focus for today is porridge yam or yam porridge which ever suits you best.
Yam porridge is one special delicacy cooked with yam as the main ingredient. As you would expect porridge is usually prepared in a pasty form but with yam porridge this paste is spicy and very delicious, the Yorubas of Western Nigeria call it Asaro. The sauce or paste is made of tomatoes, peppers, onions, spices, palm oil, and vegetables.
Each of these ingredients has their different health benefits and when combined to prepare a sumptuous meal, you sure know that you will be consuming a healthy diet.
So what could these benefits be?
HEALTH BENEFITS OF YAM PORRIDGE
· Health Bones
Yams contain high quantities of potassium and manganese and these are essential nutrients needed for healthy bones.
· Improves Brain Function
It has been discovered that yam contains a distinct compound called Diosgenin. The compound promotes the development of neurons and facilitates the effective functioning of the brain.
· Source of Energy
Carbohydrates are a major source of energy needed by the body for our daily activities.
· The vegetable content in yam porridge is rich in vitamins and fiber. These nutrients are essential for bowel movement and reduce the risk of colon cancer.
· Controls Blood-Glucose Levels
The low glycaemic index of yam makes it very suitable for regulating blood glucose levels particularly for diabetic patients.
· Good for Alzheimer’s Disease
Yams contain anti-oxidants that boost memory retention in the brain. Patients suffering from Alzheimer’s will definitely benefit from consuming this delicacy.
· Prevents Free Radicals
Vitamin C fights free radicals in the body thus, preventing the body from cancer, arthritis and even asthma.
So, why don’t you prepare yourself a bowl of yam porridge and enjoy the benefits of this healthy meal with your friends and family.
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