Anti Cancer Potential of Sweet Potato Proteins

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Sweet Potato Proteins vs. Cancer

Sweet potatoes can be considered a superfood. They are one of the healthiest and cheapest vegetables on the planet. (And one day, perhaps, even off the planet, as NASA has chosen the sweet potato for space missions.) A study out of the University of Washington aimed to identify which vegetables provided the most nutrients per dollar. In my video, Anti-Cancer Potential of Sweet Potato Proteins, you can see a graph of affordability versus nutrition for different foods. The healthiest foods, like dark green leafy vegetables, may also be the cheapest, and the highest nutrient-rich food scores per dollar were obtained for sweet potatoes.

Sweet potatoes are not just packed with nutrition but may also have special cancer-fighting properties. In 1931, a unique protein was discovered in sweet potatoes. It turns out that 80% of the protein in sweet potatoes is a type of protease inhibitor with potential anticancer effects. These proteins were originally tested against leukemia and appeared to suppress the growth of leukemia cells in a petri dish.

But how would a sweet potato protein ever get into our bloodstream? As soon as most proteins hit our stomach, they start getting digested. To get around the digestion issue, researchers tried sweet potato protein against tongue cancer cells (sweet potato proteins certainly come in contact with our mouth!). Tongue cancer is often treated with chemotherapy, and most of the chemo drugs for tongue cancer have adverse effects; so, it is indispensable for us to find other therapeutic strategies. Sweet potato protein rapidly diminished viability of the cancer in vitro within a matter of days, leading the researchers to propose that sweet potatoes may be useful for human tongue cancer. But could they possibly help with other cancers as well?

Remarkably, this special class of proteins doesn’t just survive digestion, but may also be absorbed into the bloodstream intact (in at least two of the nine women with advanced cervical cancer researchers tried giving them to).

Most recently, sweet potato proteins were tried on colorectal cancer cells, one of our most common and deadly cancers. Normally, we just surgically remove the colon, but that only works in the early stages since there are often “micrometastases” outside the colon that can subsequently lead to cancer recurrence and death; so, we’ve been searching for anti-metastatic agents. Not only does sweet potato protein slow down the growth of colon cancer cells, but it may also decrease cancer cell migration and invasion.

Sweet potato consumption has also been associated with lower gallbladder cancer rates, but it has never been directly put to the test, but what’s the downside?

Sweet potatoes are one of my favorite snacks. During the harsh Boston winters during my medical training, I used to put two freshly microwaved sweet potatoes in my coat pockets as natural hand-warmers. When they cooled down, my hand-warmers became instant healthy snacks!

More videos on getting the most nutrition for one’s dollar:

What other vegetables might contain cancer fighting properties? See #1 AntiCancer Vegetable.

Are sweet potatoes best steamed? Should we eat the skin? Find out in my video: Best Way to Cook Sweet Potatoes.

-Michael Greger, M.D.

PS: If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my free videos here and watch my live year-in-review presentations Uprooting the Leading Causes of DeathMore Than an Apple a DayFrom Table to Able, and Food as Medicine.


Michael Greger M.D., FACLM

Michael Greger, M.D. FACLM, is a physician, New York Times bestselling author, and internationally recognized professional speaker on a number of important public health issues. Dr. Greger has lectured at the Conference on World Affairs, the National Institutes of Health, and the International Bird Flu Summit, testified before Congress, appeared on The Dr. Oz Show and The Colbert Report, and was invited as an expert witness in defense of Oprah Winfrey at the infamous "meat defamation" trial.

91 responses to “Sweet Potato Proteins vs. Cancer

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  1. Ain’t he clever :-) “I used to put two freshly microwaved sweet potatoes in my coat pockets as natural hand-warmers. When they cooled down, my hand-warmers became instant healthy snacks!” – Micheal Greger, MD

    1. Joseph: I’m approaching my sixth decade but still am not sure how to distinguish between sweet potatoes and yam. Just yesterday at Sprouts Market I asked an employee to tell me the difference among what the store called sweet potatoes and called yams (there were two varieties.). He wasn’t sure, either. Can you shed light on this?

      1. It always seems to get me too! There are many varieties of both and they are often used interchangeably. Both are super healthful choices. Sweet potatoes are usually more pale, and skinny shaped. Yams (like jewel) are orangish and fatter looking.

        1. Hi Joseph, yesterday someone posted a link to ebook ($1.99 for Kindle app) by cardiologist Dennis Goodman titled Vitamin K2: the missing nutrient for heart and bone health. I downloaded and read it last night. There are two other books on same subject at Kindle. You and Dr. Greger should read it. Since I have osteoporosis of spine I am back taking a calcium supplement. But now it has vitamin K2 in it. Not sure why all the doctors I talk to have never hear of it, but things are changing fast. Hope to see a video soon on its importance here. Book is well documented. Hope you and Dr. Greger read it soon.

            1. She needs something to be sceptical about, whether that’s the WAPF or How Not to Die or Vitamin K2. She should be paying royalties for every ridiculous article she makes.

          1. Don’t you know i work for the supermarkets and try to confuse people?

            Thea always helps educate me and so many on this site. Yes, please. Refer to her knowledge about sweet potatoes above. I am glad she cleared it up for me.

      2. Porter: The “yams” sold in American supermarkets are just a type of orange fleshed sweet potato. According to research I have done in the past, a true yam is very starchy in comparison and is not generally available in the US. What happened was that when the orange variety came to the US, the supermarkets wanted a way to distinguish the two types of sweet potatoes. So, they used the term ‘yam’, thereby cementing untold confusion for generations to come.

        “In certain parts of the world, sweet potatoes are locally known by other names.[6] Although the soft, orange sweet potato is often called a “yam” in parts of North America, the sweet potato is botanically very distinct from a genuine yam (Dioscorea)…”

      3. What Sprouts is calling a yam is just a different variety of sweet potato. Yams are a completely different beast. They have a rough skin, and are very dry and starchy rather than moist and sweet like a sweet potato.

    2. haha! that made my day! He’s crazy! What else has he done in medical school besides this and the durian stink bomb?

      Also, does the protein survive the cooking process?

          1. Diana, I don’t understand your reply. Please elaborate … specifically: what does “microwaved” mean in this context; what do you mean by “losing faith”; whose knowledge do you refer to (mine, Dr. Greger’s, someone else)? If you think my post isn’t helpful I’d like to know why so as do avoid this situation in the future. Thank you.

            1. Sorry, I just cannot believe that microwaved food is good for you when it changes the cellular structure of the food. By, faith I meant how much faith I have in Dr Greger. (A lot! LOVE his videos, research and I ordered the book and DVD. ) but I cannot believe microwaved food is ok. It would be nice to know for sure.

              1. Diana, I recommend that in the future you reply to specific post *only* when what you have to say applies to those very posts. That way, you’ll avoid confusion on the part of the original poster. When you have a general comment to make, however, the appropriate place to type your comment is toward the top of the page, in the rectangle that says “Join the discussion.” Doing this would have saved both of us time and your comment would have made much more sense than it did. I write this, btw, not to be negatively critical but rather in hope that we all improve our communication skills. Thanks!

              2. cooking in any form also changes the cellular structure of food. I don’t microwave for quite a few years and took a lot to get me to do it..sweet potatoes were my first item. But microwaves cook by causing agitation of water and sugar molecules and that friction creates heat. It’s not nuclear.

              3. Diana, any cooking technique will change the cellular structure of a food… that’s what cooking does.

                As a science teacher, I’ve found that a major source of people’s concern about microwave cooking stems from the fact that it uses microwave *radiation* as the energy source and people are *understandably concerned* about being exposed to radiation. What lay people rarely understand is that just like there’s a range of explosives from the the black power used in children’s cap guns to explosives like TNT and C4, there’s a range of electromagnetic radiations from radio waves to gamma waves/radiation. In fact, the light that’s entering your eyes as you read this is electromagnetic *radiation* as well but it’s energy level is so low that it can’t injure your body… in a manner similar to the fact a child’s cap going off in between your fingers can’t really hurt you.

                Low energy radiation like light and radio waves is too weak to cause DNA damage in our cell nuclei: X-rays and gamma-rays can. High energy waves are called *ionizing radiation* because it’s strong enough to turn atoms into ions by causing the atoms to lose electrons. When these atoms/molecules become ions, they can experience unexpected, damaging chemical reactions. Non-ionizing radiation is is too weak to cause the molecules in tissues to lose electrons and have those hazardous reactions occur. A little black powder won’t do much damage… the same amount of plastic explosive can remove your finger.

                So, where do microwaves lie on the electromagnetic spectrum? Microwaves are more energetic than radio waves which few people worry about and they are surprisingly *less* energetic than the light waves your body is bathed in day in and day out! Given that fact, how come we’re not being cooked by the sunlight bouncing around us all day?

                Part of the reason is that it isn’t intense enough… If you use a magnifying glass, you’ll soon see that light waves/radiation can burn us. The other reason is that different materials are sensitive to different wave lengths. For example, your car parked in the sun doesn’t heat up due to the regular light that easily passes through clear glass of your windshield (the reason it’s clear is because it doesn’t interact with the light and so the light passes through unchanged). However, after regular light interacts with the interior of our car, that light “uses” some of its energy to heat the interior and and the light is now lower energy light, infrared light.

                When the Infrared light bounces around and heads towards the windshield, it doesn’t act like the glass is clear… it now acts like the glass is a mirror and bounces back into the car where it continues heating up the car. As more and more light passes from regular light to infrared light, the infrared light “piles up” inside and heats the car up more and more. (Incidentally, this is very similar to how global warming works on the Earth and Venus.)

                So, if microwaves have less energy than light waves do, why are they able to heat up food and regular light can’t? It goes back to different materials being sensitive to different wavelengths and getting molecules to vibrate. It turns out that water molecules and fat molecules are tuned to respond to microwaves but not light waves. When a microwave strikes water or fat molecules the microwave causes those molecule to vibrate and all those vibrating molecules then rub against each other. This rubbing turns into heat and is strong enough to cause cooking. You can do the same sort of thing with your hands… rub your hands together and you’ll experience your hands heating up due to the friction of the rubbing.

                In regular cooking methods like roasting, boiling, and frying, high temperature liquids/surfaces vibrate against the food being cooked. As the food cooks, the molecules on it’s outer surface starts vibrating enough to cause chemical reactions to happen and that is what we call cooking. As the outer layer’s cook and warm up, those molecules cause the cooler molecules farther in to start vibrating and cooking too until the entire item is cooked (or over cooked if we’re not careful!)

                A major reason why microwave cooking is so much faster is that all of it’s energy is at just the right energy level to cause all that water in the food to start vibrating/cooking… no wasted energy. The other reason is that since food isn’t only water and oil, the microwaves act as if the food is semi-transparent and can go deeper into the food before finding a water/fat molecule to make start vibrating. It’s like the microwaves get a “head start” on cooking the interior of the food. In fact, most foods are thin enough that the microwaves reach all of the food at the same time so all of the food cooks at the same time (that’s why beef roasts don’t do so well in a microwave.) However, in both conventional cooking and microwave cooking, neither cooking method has enough energy to cause the molecules to undergo dangerous ionization… both methods have only enough energy to cause cooking reactions to happen.

                Sorry to run so long, but the science teacher in me just couldn’t stand seeing this misconception running around again. I don’t know whether any of this will be persuasive to you, but I’m writing this not just for you. This is intended for anyone who might bump into my mini-lesson to de-demonize the words microwave and microwave radiation.

                Irrespective of whether my thoughts are welcomed or rejected, I wish you only well,


                1. RalphRhineau: Wow, this is post great. So well explained. I’m going to add this post (with your name or just a link to this post of course) to my standard reply about microwaves. Well done!

                  1. Thanks for the kind words!

                    While we’re about the business of complimenting folks, let me complement you on all the work you do on

                    I truly sometimes have to wonder if you have a life beyond as my comments invariably get a remarkably quick thumbs up from you. I consider you my best Fan Club of One! If anyone deserves the title NutritionFacts Fairie, it would be you.

                    Thanks for all the encouragement and positive feedback you contribute to this terrific website!


                    1. RalphRhineau: Aw shucks. Thanks for the nice feedback. You really made my day. My week even.

                      I sometimes wonder if I have a life outside of NutritionFacts too. ;-) But I feel so strongly about both the importance of Dr. Greger’s work and the value of a well moderated forum (for helping people), that I keep spending a great deal of my free time here. I consider it my community/charity/volunteer time.

                      I also am a big believer that no matter how many volunteer moderators Dr. Greger appoints, this forum needs as many people helping out as possible. It’s so hard to keep up with all the comments, which keep growing all the time. After I discovered the “up” button (which wasn’t all that long ago), I started to use it in earnest to mark the quality posts, the ones that really contribute to this community. If it feels like I’m up voting a lot of your posts, it’s because I honestly think very highly of them. Thank you for your contributions. It takes a village to raise humanity.

      1. Bake in the oven at 450 for an hour. They are HOT, so be careful when taking out of the oven.
        Cut open like a baked potato, add butter a little Real Maple Syrup and a little cinnamon. Yum, Yum!

      2. Thanks for posting this great recipe! It’s gotten to be one my favorites, I’m having almost every day. using an immersion blender in a bowl to mix everything.

    1. Peel and cut into large circles, put them in a bag with a small amount of olive oil (just enough to get the spices to stick) and some chinese five spice powder, roast at 400 for 35 mintues. Tastes like pumpkin pie..

    2. Sprinkle baked sweet potatoes with avocado or chopped nuts and a little salt.; pecans and walnuts go well. Also chopped sweet potatoes make a nice addition to soups and stews.

    3. I sprinkle mine generously with pumpkin pie spice. Pumpkin pie spice isn’t exorbitantly expensive, but the typical little containers in supermarkets aren’t particularly cheap. I make my own for pennies by buying the ingredients in bulk at WinCo. Cinnamon, ginger, cloves, allspice, and nutmeg. All Greger-endorsed spices that make a superfood even more super.

    4. Boil, slice, then slather with sriracha. Deviant cells that escape the clutches of the protease inhibitors get dispatched by the capsaicin.

    1. Although the word “potato” is common to both regular & sweet and both are tubers, they are botanically different from one another (that is, they are different genera & species: potato is Solanum tuberosum; sweet potato is Ipomoea batatas). This, by the way, brings to mind Mark Twain’s observation about the differences between “lightning” and “lightning bugs” despite the similarity in the terms!

    2. White potatoes are the rare whole plant food with a high glycemic index. Of course they are still a million times healthier than animal products.

    3. Sweet Potatoes aren’t a type of potato, they come from the morning glory family. They are also very rich in polyphenols, and have a lower Glycemic index.

  2. I steam sweet potatoes in my instant pot, mash the steamed potatoes with a small amount of hot water to make puree. The puree lasts for few days, and I put a big dollop in my daily green smoothies. If I want a richer and thicker smoothie with more protein, I throw in a serving of adzuki beans which I also steam in instant pot enough for the whole week.

        1. george: Exactly! It was so helpful to be able to find a single page that is so well written/easily digestible (for those willing to read it) and comprehensive.

          Thanks for feedback. Glad it helped!

  3. Is there any evidence stating beta carotene in whole foods is not causing lung cancer in smokers and former smokers? We know this is the case for supplementary beta carotene. All these orange vegatables are loaded with bcarotene.

  4. Thanks for info on yams vs sweet potatoes! I was just about to ask when I read the responses. Good to know there are few differences in the USA.

    1. I thought Yams were when you could not spell potato ;^) A certain person comes to mind… hummm
      I like to make a sauce out of sweet potatoes. Cook ’em however you like and then stick ’em in a food processor, season to taste. Add almond milk or veg broth to a sauce consistency. Great over other veggies

  5. Diana: I’ve heard this argument before in various forms. For example, some people claim that watering plants with water that has been microwaved kills the plants. But I’ve never heard of anyone actually doing such an experiment and having their plants die. And I’ve never actually seen that such a study was truly done in any kind of respectable way (published in a peer reviewed journal so that we have a better chance of it being an experiment that shows what you actually think it shows).

    I heard of one woman who claimed to do her own personal experiment like this. She used two types of water and claimed that the one which didn’t sprout a seed was the microwaved water. However, it turned out that the microwaved water came from the tap. Her other water was spring/bottled water. To be a true test, she would have had to have a third category that used the tap water without microwaving. Without that test, it is possible (and the far more likely explanation) that the tap water was the problem, not the microwaving.

    Bottom line: I think this is another one of those microwave myths. Do you have any evidence to the contrary?

    1. Thea, I had to try it because I am a plant person and a microwave user and it concerned me. It’s bunk. Try it. Another BS rumor that people accept as fact because they want or need to, whatever.

      1. Hey thanks for doing that. I have simply dismissed this in the past but going through it here prompted me to try this experiment. You have saved me the trouble. Yeah, somebody had to do it.

    2. It’s possible that someone could design the experiment in a way to demonstrate significant differences between microwaved and non-mw water, which would involve oxygen deprivation to the roots. Microwaving (or any other method of heating) depletes the water of dissolved gases, and roots need oxygen. Of course this would have nothing to do with microwaving per se, but it’s possible that this myth got started by someone who was unaware of the fact that they were introducing anaerobic conditions to the microwaved water sample.

      1. Lakota: Thank you for your post! After I submitted my post, I realized that you really need a fourth category at least – one where water is heated by any method, not just the microwave. But I didn’t know if it would be all that helpful to give a follow up post. Your post helps support this idea that it is any sort of intense heat that may be an issue.

        Also, I don’t know if the original home-experimenter poured the water on the plants while hot. It’s my understanding that plants don’t like hot water…

  6. The finest nutrition and health site I have reviewed thus far. I have been studying nutrition and health since 1965. This series is wonderful! I hope it continues.

  7. Okay, that is good info. There is evidence that heating water in any method, will change the structure of the molecules so it is recommended to only bring water to a mild perk before making medicinal herbal teas..don’t boil it. I think Gerald Pollack’s work with water is powerful, but there’s also some less scientific info from Daniel Vitalis. Heat just alters stuff, breaks it apart..sometimes good for opening up micronutrients and breaking cell walls, other times bad for destroying nutrients that are larger and more susceptible. I’ll have to try the sprouting procedure, thanks!

  8. I microwave sweet potatoes at my office because it is quick and that is all I have. I had been microwaving them at home, too, but if the potato is really fat I found it difficult to gauge the time and I’d end up with either a raw crunchy center or tough, unchewable ends. I started steaming them and they come out perfect every time. Steaming is very forgiving. I can set them on the stove in the steamer, start watching an episode of Homeland, and then go back in 20-30 minutes to a perfectly cooked, fully nutritious tater.

    1. Psych MD: Great post.

      FYI: I find that a combo of the two methods works well. I microwave, but I have 1/2 to 1 inch of water in the bottom so that it sort of steams and microwaves at the same time. I flip halfway through and I find that that system works pretty well. Just sharing an idea with you.

      One more thought: Other people have wet paper towels and wrapped them around the potato before putting them in the microwave. I tried that but found that for the bigger potatoes, it needed more moisture.

    2. The problem is that the microwaves aren’t able to penetrate uniformly through thick foods. In this case, it’s useful to reduce the intensity of the waves to 50-70% so that the outer layer cooks at a slower rate and allows the heat generated inside the potato to conduct to the center of the potato in the same fashion that regular baking works… it’s like the microwaves get a head start on heating the center of the potato instead of having to migrate all the way from the outer surface to the center. Hope this helps.

    1. Just had one a few minutes ago. One Asian purple sweet potato (with allspice and cinnamon), followed by 3 Peruvian blue potatoes with garlic and chives, the whole washed with some green tea… I’m feeling high already…

  9. I started eating sweet potatoes, daily, about 15 years ago because I’d read they were good for the skin!! Hallelujah!!! So glad to know I have also been helping to prevent cancer all these years!!!!!

  10. This may be TMI but I suffer gas almost immediately after eating sweet potatoes (and regular potatoes). Any advice? Vegan for 25 years and counting. :)

    1. The blog articles have an informal referencing style. You have to follow the links and, in the case that the link points to a video on this site, look at the video’s references.

  11. When I steam it I usually mash it with a generous amount of soymilk and the aforementioned pumpkin pie spice. A few minutes ago I was halfway through one and had a sudden inspiration: blackstrap molasses. Made it even more delicious.

  12. What a timely topic. Sweet Potatoes/Yams are on sale because of Thanksgiving. Buy a bunch, leave in the paper shopping bag and store in a dark cool place. They should keep for several months. An inexpensive way to eat them for several months.

    1. Nick_k: Mercola is not a source that many people around here find credible. When I did my own research on microwaves, I found the arguments against microwaves to be lacking. It’s true that you don’t want to use plastic in the microwave, but you don’t have to use plastic…

      Having just said what I did about Mercola, it’s funny to me that I’m going to refer you to the following site. This author is also not one that I normally find to be credible. But the following page is a great summary of the information available about microwaves, and it is very easy to read. The article does a great job of dispelling microwave myths. (No one is wrong about everything just as no one is right about everything.):

      Of course, no one *has* to use the microwave. I’m not trying to get you to change your mind about using the microwave. I’m just trying to stop the spread of microwave myths. I’m glad you found the information about sweet potatoes comforting. I like them too!

  13. I’m really surprised Dr. Gregor suggests using microwaves. Besides bombarding the food with high-pulsed radiation, which negatively affects the food, it can ultimately negatively affect the body. From

    Robert O. Becker, author of The Body Electric, stated the following on page 314 in his book:

    It’s [Microwave sickness] first signs are low blood pressure and slow pulse. The later and most common manifestations are chronic excitation of the sympathetic nervous system [stress syndrome] and high blood pressure.

    This phase also often includes headache, dizziness, eye pain, sleeplessness, irritability, anxiety, stomach pain, nervous tension, inability to concentrate, hair loss, plus an increased incidence of appendicitis, cataracts, reproductive problems, and cancer. The chronic symptoms are eventually succeeded by crisis of adrenal exhaustion and ischemic heart disease [the blockage of coronary arteries and heart attacks].

    In another book entitled Health Effects of Microwave Radiation, author Dr. Lita Lee also expressed his concern over the use of microwaves. Dr. Lee observed that the symptoms listed above could be caused by certain observations shown below.

    Lymphatic disorders were observed, leading to decreased ability to prevent certain types of cancers

    An elevated rate of cancer cell formation was observed in the blood

    Increased rates of stomach and intestinal cancers were observed

    Higher rates of digestive disorders and gradual breakdown of the systems of elimination were observed

    Read more:

    1. Hi, Claudia,

      I went to the bottom most link since the top one just took me to the generic home page. The article takes a lot of words that sound scary to the lay person, adds a lot of similar citations to bolster the original premise that microwaves and radiation are dangerous without understanding or giving a damn about the underlying science. Sadly, there are way too many people out there who are happy to sell lies to make their living and they dupe a lot of sincere people (think the National Enquirer and it’s ilk.)

      One of the things I noticed while I was on the site was a number of technically educated people being terribly dismissive / condescending to folks who were falling for or promulgating the falsehoods / misinformation on that site. Sad to say, but many people who understand / get science / math tend to not interact well with carbon-based life units that aren’t technically well trained / educated. In making corrections or challenges to folk who don’t understand much about science, I try to be respectful because in the end, such disdainful feedback is counterproductive if one hopes to to educate / convince other people. No one likes to be treated rudely.

      That said, in our egalitarian society where everyone is equal socially, that egalitarianism leads to people who don’t have the necessary background and education to think that their thoughts are just as valid as those of a person who does have such education. And I get that… no one likes to feel inadequate in their understanding, especially when science is given such high regard in our society.

      While maters like the value of a poem, or a social science concept can be debated and judged to be valuable / worthless, science and math are much less egalitarian. I don’t care how many people want 2 + 3 to equal 7, it can’t. Science is a little closer to the humanities because there is more inference used to establish laws and theories, but in the end, those concepts end up having to stand up to dispassionate review in order to be accepted. And there are some absolutes like the fact that gravity only attracts masses and it’s impossible to make a perpetual motion machine, no mater what the fine folks at Popeil / RonCo might say.

      I will give some credit to the Natural Society in ringing the alarm for some things that are worrisome. Unfortunately, however, the matters of valid concern are mixed in with so much shoddy, sensationalistic, fear mongering science that the entire site is useless to me. That’s what makes such a gem… the good doctor unearths and passes on solid research based info and there’s a critical mass of scientifically well trained people who support who can respectfully speak truth to the unsubstantiated ‘science’ that manages to wander onto the website.

  14. So some protein manages to get into the blood stream and therefore must not be denatured in the digestive system. But you didn’t address the likely denaturation of the proteins by heating. Does the protein only get in if raw sweet potatoes are eaten? Or must one use a special way of cooking?

  15. Hello Dr,
    Thank you for posting this awesome information about sweet potato , but when you mentioned that microwaved potatoes were ” healthy” snack I was shocked.
    Microwaving food is very unhealthy and all proteins in the potato would be destroyed by microwave and changed into a toxic substance.
    Naturally baked sweet potato on not too big temperature ( only 350) is the best choice.
    Otherwise , good information. Thank you.

  16. For any who is confused about the difference between a Yam and a Sweet Potato, the confusion began during the era of slavery. Yams are large, starchy tubers with a low content of polyphenols and they are found in Africa and Asia. Sweet Potatoes are native to the Americas and have varying levels of sweetness and moistness.

    Slaves from Africa started cooking with Sweet Potatoes, making African dishes with them and using them as a yam replacement. Over time, instead of being understood as their own vegetable, sweet potatoes were labelled “Garnet Yams” People in the south ate a lot of these garnet yams.

    When purple and white varieties of sweet potato were introduced, Americans did not make the same mistake and labelled them sweet potatoes, not yams. This is why certain colours of sweet potato are called “sweet potatoes” while the orange versions are called “garnet yams” or just “yams”. The truth is that they are all sweet potatoes. Real Yams only feature in African and Asian Cuisine, and you probably haven’t tried one.

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