Potato: The Misunderstood Nutritional Champion

Boiled potatoes

Potatoes, despite being a nutritious crop are widely perceived to be unhealthy and have been wrongly blamed for obesity in urban areas. However, when prepared and consumed in the right way, potatoes are one of the healthiest foods. Consider the following benefits:

  1. Potato is the most filling food in the world

One of the biggest misconceptions about potatoes is that they are empty carbohydrates. On the contrary satire index (a measure of how full people feel after eating specific foods) ranks potatoes as number one filling food. Potatoes contain 4.7g of fiber and are loaded with starch fiber which loads up the gut slowing down digestion hence reducing on food intake

  1. Our bodies absorb relatively low Potato calories Consumption of food with high calories may subsequently result to diabetes mellitus and obesity. Potatoes starch is not easily digestible which reduces absorption of every calorie therefore mitigating the aforementioned health risks.
  2. Potatoes make athletes better and competitive

Body of an athlete relies highly on stored carbs during high intensity training. The body stores carbohydrates in the muscles and liver as glycogen and use them as a source of fuel for the brain and muscles during physical activity. Potato is a prime source of carbohydrates which enables one push further and subsequently performs better during high intensity physical activities. Potatoes also contain potassium that is crucial for proper muscle functioning.

  1. Potatoes are more nutritious than commonly perceived

Most people think of potatoes as ‘starchy’ vegetable, unknown to many, starch is not as bad and is actually a complex carbohydrate that research has constantly linked it to weight loss. In addition resistant starch absorption in potatoes regulates blood sugar.

In all, Potatoes are one of the healthiest foods available to us. All that is needed is finding methods of preparing and consuming it in a healthy way.

 Image courtesy of pixabay.com

 

A 100 gram (g) of potato, which is equivalent to half the size of a medium sized potato, contains the following nutrition value:

  • 94 Calories
  • 15 grams of fat
  • 0 grams of cholesterol
  • 08 grams of carbohydrates
  • 1 grams of dietary fiber
  • 10 grams of protein
  • 10 milligrams of calcium
  • 64 milligrams of iron
  • 27 milligrams of magnesium
  • 6 milligrams of vitamin C
  • 21 milligrams of vitamin B6

Source: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/280579.php

Written and compiled by: Horace Maingi, ICT Dept. NPCK

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