3 Benefits of Including Potatoes in Your Diet

10 November, 2020
In this article, we'll explain all about the health benefits of consuming potatoes. They're especially good for athletes too.

If we think of food with excellent carbohydrate content, we have to give a special mention to potatoes. These tubers have been cultivated by humans for centuries and have helped to meet our daily carbohydrate needs. The benefits of potatoes were even present in certain eras such as the Middle Ages; the staple food in the diets of peasants.

In the composition of potatoes, low glycemic index carbohydrates stand out, but there are also other macronutrients that you should know about. In this article, we’ll review them all, and tell you the benefits of incorporating potatoes into your diet.

Three benefits of potatoes

The benefits we discuss are based on the nutrients in the potato and its low calorific value. Nevertheless, it’s important to bear in mind which method we use to cook them. Frying them negatively effects their quality and for this reason we recommend you consume them boiled or baked.

1. They provide quality energy 

You probably already know that carbohydrates provide energy. Nevertheless, it’s important to distinguish between those with a high glycemic index, which promotes pancreatic stress, and those with a low glycemic index, which provides sustained energy.

Potatoes contain sugars from the latter category, and are considered healthier. In fact, there’s sufficient scientific evidence that advises us to limit our consumption of simple carbohydrates such as added sugars. Complex carbohydrates are always best.

oven baked potato wedges benefits of potatoes

Potatoes are also capable of providing sugars, but their total calorific value is a lot lower than other foods that contain carbohydrates – as long as they’re not fried, of course.

The consumption of these tubers, therefore, helps satisfy our energetic demands with a lower risk of producing inequalities in the calorific balance, which would generate unwanted weight.

2. Potatoes contain vitamin C

When we talk about vitamin C, we generally think of citrus fruits. You’d be surprised to know that there are many other foods in nature with superior quantities of this nutrient that lemons and oranges provide. The vitamin C content of a potato, for example, is significant.

The importance of said macronutrient resides in its capacity to stimulate the immune system. According to a study published in the American Journal of Lifestyle and Medicine, regular vitamin C intake helps to prevent the appearance of the common cold, or failing that, it reduces its duration.

For this reason, it’s so important to include foods with this nutrient in your diet. Otherwise it may be necessary to resort to taking supplements to avoid defects.

3. Consuming potatoes helps to increase collagen synthesis

The benefit that we mention in this last part is also related to the vitamin C content of potatoes. This nutrient is capable of increasing collagen synthesis, in addition to boosting the immune system.

This protein is one of the most abundant in the human body. It has a special importance in muscular tissue since it aids regeneration. Guaranteeing a constant supply of vitamin C increases endogenous synthesis in the protein, which results in a protective factor against muscular injuries.

baking potatoes benefits of eating potatoes

It’s also possible to develop this effect by consuming gelatine frequently. An investigation published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition confirms the synergetic effect of both elements.

Include more potatoes in your diet to take advantage of its benefits

As you can see, potatoes are beneficial to your health. When you begin including products in your diet that are rich in carbohydrates, consider these tubers since their nutritional quality is elevated.

Potatoes are a very attractive option. More so than pasta made from a base of refined flour that has a negative impact on pancreatic function.

Whether you’re an athlete or not, potatoes can be a phenomenal ingredient for the elaboration of culinary preparations. In any case, avoid frying them. The best option is always to boil or bake them in order to not increase their calorific value.

Finally, you should know that fried potatoes produce a series of carcigenic waste compounds, such as acrylamide. It’s always best to avoid this method of cooking.

  • Hannou SA., Haslam DE., McKeown NM., Herman MA., Fructose metabolism and metabolic disease. J Clin Invest, 2018. 128 (2): 545-555.
  • Bucher A., White N., Vitamin C in the prevention and treatment of the common cold. Am J Lifestyle Med, 2016. 10 (3): 181-183.
  • Shaw G., Lee Barthel A., Ross ML., Wang B., et al., Vitamin C enriched gelatin supplementation before intermittent activity augments collagen synthesis. Am J Clin Nutr, 2017. 105 (1): 136-143.