Health and Nutrition Benefits of Potatoes
Potatoes make a great root vegetable and are a staple food in many households. They are an underground tuber that grows on the roots of the Solanum Plant. Potatoes cost very little, are easy to grow, and can be packed with a wide range of nutrients.
Here are the nutritional and health benefits of potatoes.
Packed With Nutrients
Potatoes can be a great source of many vitamins and minerals. The nutritional content and preparation methods used to make potatoes vary. Frying potatoes have more calories and less fat than baking.
It is also important to remember that potatoes’ skin contains many vitamins. Peeling potatoes can drastically reduce their nutritional content.
Potatoes have high amounts of flavonoids, carotenoids, and phytochemicals.
These compounds act in the body as free radicals neutralizers. They can increase the likelihood of chronic diseases like diabetes, heart disease, and cancer.
According to a test-tube experiment, the antioxidants found in potatoes can be used to reduce the growth of colon cancer and liver cells.
Studies have shown that color potatoes, such as purple potatoes, can have up to three to four more antioxidants per gram than white potatoes. This makes them possibly more effective at neutralizing the effects of free radicals.
But, the majority of this evidence is from studies in test tubes. Before making any health-related recommendations, we need more human-based evidence.
May Improve Blood Sugar Control
A special type of starch in potatoes is resistant starch.
The body does not break down this starch and fully absorb it. Instead, it reaches its largest intestine, where the beneficial bacteria in your gut receive nutrients.
Research has shown that resistance starch may have health benefits. They can lower insulin resistance, which in turn can improve blood sugar control.
An animal study showed that mice fed resistant starch had lower insulin resistance. This indicates that their bodies were better at removing sugary substances from the blood.
May Improve Digestive Health
The resistant starch in potatoes might also benefit digestive health.
Once resistant starch reaches your large intestine, it is used as food for beneficial intestinal bacteria. These bacteria break down the starch and make short-chain fatty oils.
Most resistant starch from potatoes can be converted to short-chain fat acid butyrate, the preferred food source by gut bacteria.
A gluten-free diet is one of the most popular worldwide. This diet eliminates gluten. Gluten is a family protein found in grains like wheat, barley, and rice.
Most people do not feel any adverse side effects from gluten.
Celiac disease or non-celiac Gluten Sensitivity can cause severe discomfort when they eat foods that contain gluten. The symptoms include stomach pain, constipation (due to diarrhea), bloating, and skin rashes.
Eleven people were offered 38 common foods and were asked to rate how filling each food was. Potatoes achieved the highest level of fullness.
Potatoes were seventy times more filling than croissants and rated the least filling food item. Because they reduce hunger, filling foods may help you lose weight.
Potatoes are not only healthy, but they’re also deliciously versatile.
Potatoes can also be baked, steamed, or boiled. The oil used to fry potatoes can make them more calorie-dense.
Instead, chop the potatoes and then roast them in a skillet with some extra virgin olive oils and a pinch of rosemary.
As most nutrients are in the potatoes’ skin, it is important not to remove them. This will ensure you get the best nutrients from your potato.