Cluster yam is a plant that grows in Africa. It has a fleshy, potato-like root (tuber) that is used for food in times of famine or for making medicine. Wild forms of Cluster yam are likely to contain poisons and must be soaked and boiled before use. But Cluster yams that are raised by farmers generally do not have the toxins because safer plants are cultivated selectively.
What is Cluster/Bitter Yam?
Is a food with economic and socio-cultural importance in many tropical countries.
Bitter yam (Dioscorea dumetorum) belongs to the genus Dioscorea and family Dioscoreaca. Other common names for bitter yam include African bitter yam, wild yellow yam, trifoliate (three-leaved) yam and cluster yam. Bitter yam is known as “Esuru” in Yoruba and many Igbo speaking area in the south-eastern Nigeria, where it is regarded as food for the adult. In the area, bitter yam serves as food of choice for the diabetic patients and as herb for the treatment of various ailments.
Medical/Healing Benefits of Bitter Yam
People take bitter yam for diabetes, rheumatoid arthritis (RA), stomach pain (colic), menstrual disorders, and schistosomiasis. Schistosomiasis is a disease caused by parasitic worms.
- Rheumatoid arthritis (RA).
- Stomach pain (colic).
- Menstrual disorders.
- A disease caused by parasitic worms called schistosomiasis.
- Skin diseases
- Other conditions.
More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of bitter yam for these uses.