Don’t you want to know what your potatoes does for you? Well….
Potatoes have become a staple food in many parts of the world and an integral part of much of the world’s food supply. It is the world’s fourth-largest food crop, following maize, wheat, and rice. Funny enough, a lot of people are constant consumers of this food yet they do not know the health benefit of it.
Hence, there are various species of potatoes; each with their peculiar characteristics and similarities.
Notwithstanding, each of these species come with their own nutritional value. So regardless of the species you find yourself consuming, be rest assured of its health benefits.
Here are eight wonderful health benefits of potatoes:
1. Blood Pressure
With the increasing issue of blood pressure, it is interesting to know that while consuming this staple food you are being saved from a lot of health crisis. According to Victoria Jarzabkowski, a nutritionist with the Fitness Institute of Texas at The University of Texas at Austin, the fiber found in potatoes can help lower cholesterol by binding with cholesterol in the blood. “After it binds, we excrete it,” she said.
Potatoes are also a good source of potassium. “All potatoes are potassium rich,” Jarzabkowski said. “They have even more potassium than a banana, and a lot of it is found in the [potato’s] skin.” She noted that the outer potato peel also contains a good deal of fiber. Potassium is a mineral that helps lower blood pressure, according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
2. Brain functioning and nervous system health
Potatoes also contain B6 vitamins which help the functionality of the brain. Vitamin B6 helps create useful brain chemicals, including serotonin, dopamine and norepinephrine, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center.
This means that eating potatoes may help with depression, stress and even perhaps attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
However, potatoes also help in maintaining the glucose level. And for student having issues with learning and retentive memory, potato goes a long way in improving ones learning and memory function.
This research was conducted and certified by a study conducted in 1995 by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition which found out that modest increases in glucose could help enhance learning and memory. Potassium, which encourages the widening of blood vessels, also helps ensure your brain gets enough blood.
Vitamin C can help prevent everything from scurvy to the common cold, and potatoes are full of this nutrient, with about 45 percent of the daily recommended intake per medium baked potato, according to the Washington State Potato Commission.
There has been a controversy that potatoes and other night shade family are perpetrators of inflammation in the body. However, there is limited scientific evidence to support this hypothesis, according to the Arthritis Foundation.
The organization suggests that people with arthritis try cutting nightshade vegetables from their diets for two weeks to see if symptoms improve.
Some studies suggest these vegetables may actually help reduce arthritis symptoms, the foundation said. For example, a 2011 study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that potatoes may reduce inflammation.
One of the best health benefits of potatoes is the fact that it catalyzes digestion. This is made possible due to the high fiber content it possesses. In addition Jarzabkowski said “Potatoes’ high level of carbohydrates makes them easy to digest.”
6. Heart health
Intake of potatoes helps the heart work effectively with the presence of fibre. Jarzabkowski said fibre is associated with clearing cholesterol from blood vessels; vitamins C and B6 help reduce free radicals; and carotenoids help maintain proper heart functioning.
Additionally, B6 plays a crucial role in the methylation process, which, among other things, changes the potentially dangerous molecule homocysteine into methionine – a component in new proteins, according to Harvard. Too much homocysteine can damage blood vessel walls, and high levels of it are associated with increased risk of heart attack and stroke.
7. Skin care
A good skin they say is the sign of healthy feeding, potatoes in its contribution to this; contains wonderful nutrients like vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium, magnesium, zinc and phosphorous which can help keep your skin as smooth and creamy. These nutrients are all present in potatoes.
With all the sundry nutritional and health benefits of potatoes, consuming it with other equally nutritionally beneficial food won’t be a bad idea.
So go get a potato and make a healthy you out of it.
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