How Healthy Are Potatoes?
Potatoes pack tons of fiber—especially in the skin!
Okay, so French fries and cream-laced mashed potatoes aren’t exactly superfoods, but are spuds really the enemy, nutritionally speaking? The carb-rich vegetable gets a bad rap since it is super-starchy, but potatoes are actually healthier than you might think.
Just one medium white potato offers a ton of fiber—especially in the skin!—which can help keep you full for longer. The potassium found in spuds may also keep blood pressure levels under control. Taters contain a handful of B vitamins that offer health benefits too. Pair a steamed potato with your morning eggs for a healthy hit of B6, niacin, and folate, which has been found to prevent birth defects in developing fetuses.
It’s common for people to conflate potatoes with “bad carbs,” but unlike pasta and white bread, potatoes offer key nutrients like iron and manganese, as well as vitamin C. Even better, a medium potato is only 160 calories, so as long as it’s prepared the right way (think: roasted in the oven with olive oil as opposed to deep-fried), it won’t wreck your healthy eating plan.
While potatoes aren’t exactly the new kale, they are veggies. Instead of ordering greasy home fries at brunch, make potatoes at home so you can control how they’re cooked. The good news is there are tons of slimmed-down versions of your favorite potato recipes, like these sweet potato pancakes that are just crunchy enough and only made from two(!) good-for-you ingredients. Cook them up at home for a sweet and savory side that’s also high in antioxidants.
In the mood for something even simpler? Go ahead and nosh on a baked potato tonight—and save the curly fries for an every-now-and-then treat.