Yams are a monocot from the Dioscoreaceae family.
Sweet potatoes are a dicot from the Convolvulaceae family.
Therefore, they are about as distantly related as two flowering plants can be.
Culinarily, yams are starchier and drier than sweet potatoes.
So can hamsters eat yams?
Let’s take a look at their nutritional data and find out more.
In particular, their acidic, water, sugar, fat, salt and calcium content is of particular interest as far as hamsters are concerned.
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 494 kJ (118 kcal)
Sugars 0.5 g
Dietary fiber 4.1 g
Vitamin A equiv. (1%) 7 μg
Thiamine (B1) (10%) 0.112 mg
Riboflavin (B2) (3%) 0.032 mg
Niacin (B3) (4%) 0.552 mg
Pantothenic acid (B5) (6%) 0.314 mg
Vitamin B6 (23%) 0.293 mg
Folate (B9) (6%) 23 μg
Vitamin C (21%) 17.1 mg
Vit E (2%) 0.35 mg
Vitamin K (2%) 2.3 μg
Calcium (2%) 17 mg
Iron (4%) 0.54 mg
Magnesium (6%) 21 mg
Manganese (19%) 0.397 mg
Phosphorus (8%) 55 mg
Potassium (17%) 816 mg
As you can see yams contain a lot of phosphorus, a little calcium, quite a lot of acidic content and a hint of sugar and fat.
This means that hamsters can eat yams but only in small amounts of a few pieces at a time that they can hold in their paws.
Only feed them fresh yams.
Do not feed them cooked yams, as they are bad for them and should be avoided.