A recently published study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that those who eat more potatoes weigh more than those who don’t.
On average, an extra serving of potatoes per day compared to the baseline study population’s intake equated to a 1.69-pound weight gain over four years.
Potato chip eaters weighed an average of 1.28 pounds more than the less heavy users of potatoes. If potato eating tended to be in the French fried form, that was correlated with a 3.35-pound weight gain.
The study was conducted by researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health and analyzed previous studies of over 120,000 men and women who were not obese when the study started and who were also generally healthy.
Not surprisingly, eating more high-fiber foods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and nuts were correlated with slight weight loss over the four-year study period. Yogurt intake – despite being fiber-free in its natural form – also tracked with weight loss.
Do Potatoes Help in Gaining Weight?
Potatoes are not only sweet but also high in essential nutrients. They contain potassium, sodium, dietary fiber, vitamin C, iron, vitamin B6, and magnesium per 100 grams. You can call it a healthy food without a doubt, as proven from research.
However, according to a study, potatoes are not good for your health because they raise your blood sugar level. But this is not entirely true. Potatoes rank medium on the glycemic index, and only a large amount of them will cause a sugar spike. It is also thought that vegetables’ starch content contributes to weight gain. But in fact, 100 grams of potatoes contains only 16 grams of carbohydrates and 0.2% fat.
According to research, this nutritional value generates approximately 75 calories. Hence you don’t need to be concerned because it makes up only a minor portion of your daily diet. But the main problem arises with deep-fried food only.
That being said, we can say that potatoes are a great option to include in your diet if you are looking to gain some pounds on your skinny body. However, if you are already obese and don’t want to put in extra calories, you should avoid potatoes.
Following are some benefits of eating potatoes:
1. Help In Improving Digestion
Potatoes contain a particular type of fiber called “resistant starch,” which combines the benefits of soluble fiber with insoluble fiber and causes less gas than other fiber types. Starch resistance can be increased by cooking them early and cooling them overnight in the fridge. You can also reheat them before serving.
Like soluble fibers, the resistant starch present in potatoes acts as a prebiotic – food for good bacteria in the large intestine that helps in improving gut health. Like insoluble fiber, it can help prevent diseases like constipation and IBS.
2. Help In Disease Prevention
Potatoes are high in antioxidants, preventing free radicals from causing cell damage. A rich antioxidant diet that includes vegetables and fruits reduces the risk of heart disease and cancer.
Make sure to choose colorful varieties like purple potatoes to get the most out of your potatoes. The more colored potatoes, the more antioxidants they will contain. In addition, potato skin may have 12 times more antioxidants than flesh. Therefore, do not be afraid to eat the peels of potatoes.
3. Helps In Improving Brain Health
Potatoes also have a co-enzyme called alpha-lipoic acid, which helps in boosting overall cognitive health. According to research, this acid is also beneficial for Alzheimer’s patients. A variety of vitamins and minerals found in potatoes have been proven to improve brain function. Vitamin B6 found in potatoes is key in maintaining a healthy nervous system.
4. Promotes Sleep
Tryptophan, found naturally in potatoes, is a natural sedative that helps in promoting restful sleep. Furthermore, the potassium in potatoes acts as a muscle relaxant, ensuring more restful sleep and relaxation.
5. Help In Relieving Premenstrual Symptoms
Some studies have proven that drinking potato juice helps reduce symptoms of Premenstrual syndrome. The high amount of carbohydrates in potatoes increases tryptophan levels, which helps increase serotonin production in the body. This increase in serotonin improves mood and reduces anxiety.
For more information, you can check out these Benefits and Downsides of Consuming Potatoes.
How Can You Add Potatoes To Your Diet?
Potatoes are a healthy food, but you add them to your diet in balance. Do not go for the recipes that call for deep-frying potatoes because that’s what causes more weight gain.
You can use boiled potatoes as a filling for whole-wheat bread sandwiches or a dip in curries. To get the most out of potatoes, you can also include boiled or steamed potatoes in your diet.