Six nutritional benefits of potatoes you ought to know

The nutritional benefits of potatoes are numerous, in this article I will be sharing with you some of the benefits of potatoes, but first, let’s know what potatoes are.

Potatoes are root vegetable and a staple food in many households.

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Potatoes are tubers that grow on the roots of the Solanum tuberosum plant.

Potatoes are cheap to get in the local market, easy to grow in our small gardens
and farms and are loaded with a variety of nutrients good for your health.

Below are 6 health and nutrition benefits of potatoes.

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nutritional benefits of potatoes


1. Loaded With Nutrients

Potatoes are an unbelievable source of many vitamins and minerals.

One baked potato, including the skin, provides loads of nutrients as listed below

  • Calories: 161
  • Fat: 0.2 grams
  • Protein: 4.3 grams
  • Carbs: 36.6 grams
  • Fiber: 3.8 grams
  • Vitamin C: 28% of the RDI
  • Vitamin B6: 27% of the RDI
  • Potassium: 26% of the RDI
  • Manganese: 19% of the RDI
  • Magnesium: 12% of the RDI
  • Phosphorus: 12% of the RDI
  • Niacin: 12% of the RDI
  • Folate: 12% of the RDI

N.B: Frying potatoes adds more calories and fat than baking them, and peeling
potatoes can significantly reduce their nutritional content as contains a great
amount of the vitamins and minerals.

2. Contain a high amount of Antioxidants

Potatoes contain compounds such as flavonoids, carotenoids, and phenolic
acids.

The above-listed compounds act as antioxidants in neutralizing potentially free radicals
which are harmful molecules. Accumulation of radicals increase the risk chronic
diseases like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.

Research has found that colored potatoes have three to four times more antioxidants
than white potatoes. This makes them potentially more effective at neutralizing
free radicals.

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3. Blood Sugar Control

Potatoes contain a starch known as resistant starch.

Resistance starch is difficult to dissolve in the body, Instead, it reaches the large
intestine where it becomes a source of nutrients for the beneficial bacteria in your
gut.

Studies have shown that resistant starch has some health benefits, including reducing
insulin resistance, which in turn, improves blood sugar control.

4. Improve Digestion

The resistant starch in potatoes may also improve digestion.

When resistant starch travels to the large intestine, it becomes food for beneficial gut
bacteria. These bacteria digest it and turn it into short-chain fatty acids.

Resistant starch from potatoes are converted into the short-chain fatty acid called
butyrate which is a food source for gut bacteria.

Research has shown that butyrate can reduce the risk of inflammation in the colon
and colorectal cancer.

However, butyrate may aid patients with inflammatory bowel disorders, such as
Crohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, and diverticulitis.

5. Naturally Gluten-Free

The gluten-free diet is one of the most popular diets worldwide. It involves the elimination
of gluten, which is a family of proteins found in grains such as spelt,
wheat, barley, and rye.

However, most people do not experience adverse symptoms of consuming gluten.

An individual with a celiac disease or non-celiac gluten sensitivity can experience discomfort
when consuming foods that contain gluten. Some symptoms include sharp
stomach pain, diarrhea, constipation, bloating and skin rashes.

Potatoes are naturally gluten-free, which means they won’t trigger uncomfortable
symptoms.

Potato dishes such as gravy, au gratin recipes, and potato bread contain the high level of
gluten, which makes it makes it non-gluten free.

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6. Extremely Versatile

Not only are potatoes healthy, but they are also delicious and versatile.

Potatoes can be prepared in several ways, including boiled, baked and steamed.
Moreover frying potatoes may increase their calorie content if lots of oil are used.

Make sure not to remove the skin of the potatoes, as most of the nutrients are located
there. This will ensure you receive the maximum amount of nutrients from the
potato.

The Bottom Line: Potatoes are rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, which
make them very healthy.

They may also improve digestion and fights against signs of aging.

Potatoes are also quite filling, that means they may help you lose weight through
control hunger pains and cravings.

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