Potato is a versatile vegetable and an integral part of Indian food. There are literally innumerable ways of eating potatoes, from aloo ka parantha to bombay sandwiches. It is so intertwined with our cuisine that it is hard to think of Indian food without this staple.
However, whether potatoes are good for health or not is up for debate. While it may have some health benefits, there is also a not so healthy side to it. But first, let's take a look at how potatoes are healthy-
A good amount of carbohydrate content
Carbohydrates are the key source of energy for the body and are also important for optimal physical and mental performance. One medium-size potato contains 37 grams of carbohydrates. Potatoes with their high starch content are classified as complex carbs and eating them in moderation is not a bad idea.
Potato peels are an excellent source of vitamin C. Potatoes have 27 mg of vitamin C per serving, which is 30% of the daily value. Vitamin C aids in collagen production— a major component of muscle tissue—and supports iron absorption.
According to Macrobiotic Nutritionists and Health practitioners, 100 grams of potatoes contain about 100 calories. However, if you cook them in an unhealthy way, the calorie count may increase. Thus, it is important to cook your potatoes in a healthily. They can be boiled, steamed, baked or roasted and used in a wide assortment of dishes, instead of frying.
Potatoes have 620 mg of potassium per serving, which is 15% of the daily value required. According to Healthline, a health website, it is a key electrolyte that helps maintain the delicate balance of fluid inside and outside the cells of our body.
Potatoes contain antioxidants, including specific types, such as flavonoids, carotenoids and phenolic acids which prevent the formation of harmful free radicals, which are reactive atoms that can accumulate in your body and contribute to chronic disease and helps to reduce the risk of chronic disease.
Now, let's move on how potatoes can be unhealthy for you.
According to a report from Healthline, potatoes and processed potato chips were the two biggest contributors to weight gain, with each serving per day leading to an average weight gain of 1.3 pounds (0.58 kg) and 1.7 pounds (0.77 kg), respectively. Certain processed potato products, such as french fries and chips, contain more calories and fat than potatoes that have been boiled, steamed or roasted.
Potatoes may contain toxic compound
Potatoes contain glycoalkaloids, a type of chemical compound found in members of the nightshade family that can be toxic for your health if consumed in high amounts. Symptoms of glycoalkaloid toxicity can include drowsiness, itchiness, increased sensitivity and digestive issues
May lead to digestive issues
The resistant starch present in potatoes may contribute to digestive problems. Stomach discomfort, gas and bloating are a few of the most common side effects associated with the consumption of prebiotics and resistant starch.
Overall, there is no harm in consuming potatoes. However, it must be checked how you're consuming them. Try to make your potatoes as healthy as possible and you won't have to deal with whatever problems come with them.