Yams and Bodybuilding
It's no secret that yams are Mother Nature’s nearly-perfect food overall, and for most serious bodybuilders they have been found to be nature’s perfect "carb". The challenge is to find a good way to prepare them that is both tasty and convenient. Back in the old days, before you had some idea about how to keep things in balance, you might have dowsed them with a lot of butter and then poured on a good amount of sweet syrup of one kind or another. These days, you know more about how to control your energy levels through nutrition – and whether you're actively competing or not, you have a lot at stake in knowing what to eat and when to eat it.
You should use a calorie and carb cycling program that can be adapted to individual goals, both for competition and for maintenance, also including both oatmeal and yams is essential for taste, and can often determine the capacity to stick to a nutrition plan over time.
Your early day meals should contain the starchy carbs (mainly oatmeal and yams, sometimes white potatoes or rice, especially after workouts), and your late day meals shpuld contain the fibrous carbs (green veggies & salad veggies), with the essential fats, but your protein should stay constant with every meal.
When you compare the two kinds of potatoes we usually find, it's easy to see why yams win hands down for bodybuilders:
For Sweet Potatoes, 1 cup boiled and mashed provides 50 grams of carbs, and 8 grams of fiber -- whereas for Potatoes, 1 cup boiled and mashed provides 29 grams of carbs and only 3 grams fiber.
It's good to remember that the best sources of nourishment to establish and maintain high levels of energy are the foods with the lower glycemic index – the complex carbohydrates – because they are more slowly absorbed by the digestive system.
Bodybuilding Yams Recipes
Here's a tasty yam recipe that combines yams with lean turkey, sautéed for a few minutes, then adding a bit of orange juice, sherry and yogurt and then simmering until heated through. Each portion provides 338 calories, 4 grams of fat, 42 grams of carbs, 56 mg of sodium and 13 grams of protein.
The most convenient approach for having yams on the go is to take advantage of the microwave and pop a few yams in for a minute or two and eat them as-is. If you would rather not use a microwave, just bake them in your oven at 400 F. for 35-45 minutes, depending on the size.
For more great bodybuilding recipes checkout the Bodybuilding Cookbook.
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