Have a Plant: Fruits & Veggies for Better Health

About The Buzz: White Potatoes Are Not A Healthy Choice?

TheBUZZ: White potatoes are not a healthy choice?

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
White potatoes are full of starch which makes you gain weight.

WHAT WE KNOW

What’s the most popular vegetable in America? If you guessed potato, you are right! Plant foods provide us with precious vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Since potatoes are grown throughout the year, they’re also a fresh, seasonal and sustainable option for your meals all year long!

Unfortunately, white potatoes have often been denounced as fattening, and the anti-carb craze of recent years has only added to that undeserved perception. What many people don’t know is that your body uses carbohydrates as its main source of energy, so eating a “no-carb” or “low-carb” diet is only harming your body because it is not able to get the energy it needs!

As for white potatoes, in reality a plain, medium potato can actually aide in weight loss/maintenance. Potatoes are an excellent source for vitamins C and B6, a good source for fiber (which keeps your stomach satisfied longer) and manganese, AND they have more potassium than bananas! Plus, each potato has only 110 calories, making it a great choice to maintain a healthy weight.

When potatoes are drenched in butter, deep-fried, or oozing with bacon and high-fat cheeses, over-the-top calories, fat, and cholesterol come into play, hence … the negative connotations.

HOW DO WE KNOW THIS?

A study published in the New England Journal of Medicine in July found that potatoes including French fried, chip, boiled, and mashed forms, caused additional weight gain over the four-year study. The study claimed that potatoes in all forms cause more long-term gain than sweets and desserts. The study also found that, yogurt, fruits, nuts, vegetables, and whole grains were associated with weight loss.

All in all, the study found that boiled potatoes were linked with a mere ½ lb weight gain over four (4) years, which is hardly significant when compared to the almost 3½ lb weight gain associated with French fries and 1¾ lb weight gain associated with potato chips. This shows that it’s not potatoes that are the culprit, but how they’re prepared! * See Top 10 Healthy Cooking Methods

OUR ADVICE

Enjoy your potatoes, just remember …

    • Stay away from frying them
    • Watch the high-fat toppings (e.g. full-fat cheese, sour cream, butter)
    • Prepare them with …
      • Fat-free or low-fat buttermilk/milk
      • Fat-free chicken or vegetable broth
      • Puréed roasted garlic
      • No-salt seasonings
    • Potato chips do NOT count as a vegetable serving!
    • Use healthier recipes such as Cheesy Corn Potatoes | Roasted Red Potatoes | Garlic Roasted Potatoes

      Visit our recipe database for more mouth-watering recipes that meet our strict nutritional guidelines!

If you’re trying to lose weight, use the tried and true way: calories in should be less than calories expended through out the day! Read More about Eating a Healthy Diet

More Potato Recipes
Quick & Healthy Slow Cooker Chicken & Potatoes
Quick & Healthy Greek Potato Salad
Grilled Potato Kabobs w/Lemon-Herb Drizzle
Quick & Healthy Chili & Lime Chicken Potato Tacos

 

*Mozaffarian, Dariush, Toa Hoa, Eric Rim, et al. “Changes in Dietary and Lifestyle and Long-Term Weight Gain in Women and Men.” New England Journal of Medicine (2011); 364: 2392-2404.

 

Other Stories