This plant is an herbaceous perennial vine. Its edible tuberous root is long and tapered. There are two varieties of sweet yam which are either yellow or red.
It is rich in starch, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, and beta-carotene and also has other micronutrients including vitamins and manganese. The high concentration of glucose present in sweet yam makes it an excellent source of energy. It is also used in the treatment of hepatitis.