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A Healthier Potato

Insider's Viewpoint: Bernadette Joyce, Category Manager Health & Wellness, A&P Family of Supermarkets

Potatoes are good for you, delicious and nutritious. One of the most popular vegetables eaten in the US it is on the top 20 most frequently eaten raw vegetables. Potatoes are considered a starchy vegetable and contain healthy complex carbohydrates. Mother Nature knew what she was doing with potatoes. A medium, 5.3 ounce, potato has only 110 calories, packs in 45% of the daily value of vitamin C, contains no fat or cholesterol and has 2 grams of fiber.
A delimma occurs when we put unhealthy foods on potatoes. Try to limit sour cream, bacon, butter or high fat sauces. Toppings like salsa, lean proteins such as beans, chicken or fish, and all types of fresh vegetables will add flavor, variety and even more vitamins and minerals to the already naturally nutrient rich potato.

Tips when cooking:

  • Cook with the skins on whenever possible.
  • Steam or bake, rather than boil potatoes.
  • Save the cooking water after steaming potatoes, as some of the potatoes’ nutrients will have leaked into it. Use it to make gravies or soup.

Tips for storage and preparation:

  • Store in a cool, dry place, but never in the refrigerator. Refrigeration converts potato starch into sugar, creating a sweet taste and causing potatoes to darken prematurely when fried.
  • Don’t wash spuds until just before you use them. Washing them before storing will shorten their life.
  • Storing potatoes near onions can cause the potatoes to rot quicker due to the interaction of the gasses that both vegetables produce.
  • Prolonged exposure to light will cause potatoes to turn green.
  • Remove potatoes from plastic bags and store in brown paper bags or on trays in a cool dark place where air can circulate around them.

Bernadette Joyce MS,RD
Category Manager Health & Wellness
A&P Family of Supermarkets

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