Nutritional Benefits of Potatoes

Potatoes are one of the most widely used foods all over the world. This is a vegetable that constitutes the stem of the potato plant. Generally potatoes grow in warm or tropical climate, but it is still found in all countries. The maximum of the world’s potatoes are consumed in the South and South-Eastern region of Asia. Although potatoes are widely consumed, there are certain misconceptions surrounding this vegetable. Popular thoughts are that potatoes are all about fattening carbohydrates and starch. We often miss out on the hidden fact that this veggie is loaded with lots of nutritious characteristics. Potatoes are a storehouse of flavonoids, vitamins C, A, B complexes, potassium, iron, phosphorus, calcium, fibre, and hydrating elements like water. About 100 grams of this vegetable rejuvenates your body and hydrates your skin. The major ways in which potato promotes overall health conditions are:

Controls blood pressure:

Boiled or roasted potatoes make an excellent and healthy part of a meal consisting of other vegetables. The high concentration of fibre found in this vegetable helps in maintaining a proper blood flow. Apart from that, potatoes are rich in vitamin C and iron, both of which are essential to improve the rate of producing the red blood cells (RBCs). A good level of RBCs is vital to ensure that the blood flows properly throughout the body, thereby controlling the pressure of the flow.

Prevents cancer:

Flavonoids are an excellent antioxidant found in potatoes, which help prevent cancerous growth in your body. This, along with vitamins A and C, prevent the growth of carcinogenic cells and also help kill the already grown cancer cells. Eating more than 50 grams of potatoes everyday can reduce the risk of cancer by nearly 16%.

Improves bone health: Potatoes contain a good amount of vitamin C and calcium. Both of these nutritious ingredients are vital for the development of bones and help improve its core density.

Improves digestion:

Potatoes are high on fibre, vitamin B complexes, water, and iron, all of which help in breaking down complex foods into a simple form, so that they can pass through the digestive tract. Vitamins B complexes help enable the secretion of gastric juices, while the dietary fibre; both soluble and insoluble; helps in breaking down of the food particles for improved passage through the intestines. Eating abut 50 grams of fresh potatoes daily can prevent constipation as a result of better digestion.

Promotes weight gain:

Potatoes are a vegetable that is always made to bear the brunt of ‘unhealthy weight gain’, but little do most people realise that it also helps gain weight for good. Yes! There indeed is something called gaining weight for good! The vitamins C and B complexes that are present in high concentration in this vegetable, help in the proper absorption of carbohydrates. Doctors recommend eating potatoes on a regular basis, to patients who suffer from eating disorders or mental health issues that make them unnaturally thin.

Prevents insomnia:

Vitamin C and water in potatoes help release the hormones that help you sleep better. Water prevents you from getting dehydrated and hence lead to a better sleep pattern. And vitamin C soothes your nerves, which acts as a catalyst to induce sleep.
Promotes neurological health: Vitamin B complexes, especially vitamin B6, are extremely helpful in promoting and improving the functioning of your brain cells. These vitamins help release some hormones that prevent stress and anxiety. Hence, this helps in an improved functioning of your brain cells. Eating a bowl of baked potatoes or curried potatoes regularly can prevent mental health issues and brain diseases like dementia.

Protects your heart:

As you already know that this vegetable is loaded with lots of dietary fibre, it helps protect your heart. This fibre content helps in absorbing the bad (LDL) cholesterols and promotes the development of the good cholesterols. Apart from fibre, vitamins B6 and C also play an important role in enabling the proper pumping of blood throughout the body. A couple of potatoes tossed into your every curry or vegetable pies can work wonders on your heart health!

Improves your skin:

Water is an integral ingredient, along with vitamin C, to hydrate and rejuvenate your skin, and protect it from the harmful rays of the sun. Potatoes are a powerhouse of water, which in itself contains lots of healthy minerals. Eating one medium sized potato each day means that you are loading yourself with 70% to 80% of its water content! This vegetable helps improve the texture and quality of your skin also protect it from scurvy.

Prevents rheumatism:

Calcium and magnesium, both of which are found in good quantity in this vegetable, prevent pains in the joints and untimely rheumatism. This is in a way related to the ability if potatoes to protect your bones. Another interesting fact about potatoes in that the water that’s left after boiling it, can be cooled down and poured on the inflammations caused due to rheumatism, to soothe the area. Apart from this, vitamin C is an excellent nutrient that prevents inflammation and pains.

The best thing about potatoes is that you cannot really go wrong with this vegetable, when it comes to preparing it well enough for the whole family to eat! You can put together a hearty meal with potatoes, for everybody across all age groups. The best way to treat your belly as well as your heart with this vegetable is to roast them, and simply sprinkle some salt and pepper. And, magic had been done! One precaution is, however, to make sure that you maintain an upper limit to the consumption of this vegetable as it may lead to starch deposition and obesity. Eating about one or two potatoes daily helps in boosting your overall immunity.

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