By Nutritionist Blogger Jeni Tackett, RD, LD
Just about every Thanksgiving table will have a very large bowl of amazing mashed potatoes. And at the other end of the table, many will have sweet potato (with marshmallows, of course).
We need to more grateful to this humble food (the potatoes, not the marshmallows).
Somewhere along the way potatoes got a bad name. White potatoes in particular are being lumped in with refined breads and cereals just because of their color.
White potatoes are not refined! Potatoes are whole foods packed with fiber and nutrients. You should not fear the potato…in fact, I am urging you to eat the potato!
A small Idaho potato (2 ½” inch diameter, 5” long) contains 110 calories, 0 grams of fat, 13 mg of sodium, 620 mg of potassium, 26 grams of carbohydrate, 2 grams of fiber, 1 gram of sugar and 3 grams of protein.
Here are the nutrients in white potatoes:
• Vitamin C (45%)
• Vitamin B-6 (10%)
• Magnesium (6%)
• Phosphorus (6%)
• Iron (6%)
• Thiamin (8%)
• Niacin (8%)
• Folate (6%)
Sweet potatoes always get a better rap, and they should due to the huge amount of Vitamin A (beta carotene)!
A small sweet potato (2 ½ inch diameter, 5” long) contains 112 calories, 0 g fat, 72 mg sodium, 438 mg of potassium, 26 g carbohydrate, 4 g fiber, 5 g sugar, and 2 g of protein.
Here are the nutrients in sweet potatoes:
• Vitamin A (368%)
• Vitamin C (5%)
• Vitamin B-6 (15%)
• Magnesium (8%)
• Iron (4%)
• Calcium (3%)
Potatoes are super foods! When you are looking to cut calories, please don’t avoid them.
However, you do have to be careful what you put on your potatoes. Adding loads of butter or bacon to a white potato, or brown sugar and marshmallows to sweet potatoes, adds lots of calories and can affect your waistline.
Instead top a potato with some low-fat plain Greek yogurt, salsa, or avocado.
You can make potatoes delicious without bacon!
Keep the nutrient-rich potato as a healthy side dish. Make peace with the potato and fuel your body with whole foods.
|Meet Jeni Tackett, Let’s Move Quad Cities Nutrition Blogger. Jeni is a registered and licensed dietitian for Rock Valley Health. Jeni counsels her clients on weight loss and nutrition. You can read Jeni’s bio and other blog posts by clicking here.|