Sweet potatoes are a delicious, bright, and nutritious vegetable with the ability to liven up any plate of food in color and taste. “In general, the more color you can add to your diet coming from fruits and vegetables, the better,” says sports dietitian Yasi Ansari.
What are the health benefits of sweet potatoes?
According to the USDA, just one of these delicious veggies supplies your body with more than 100 percent of your daily vitamin A requirements. Sweet potatoes are also packed with the antioxidant vitamin C and also vitamin B6, important for the brain, immune, and nervous systems.
They are a great source of magnesium and potassium, both of which regulate many processes all over the body. The vegetables also carry a good amount of plant-based fiber, which helps maintain a healthy weight, while lowering the risk of diseases such as type 2 diabetes and some heart conditions.
Do sweet potatoes have high levels of carbohydrates?
Compared to your average spud, sweet potatoes are lower in calories and carbohydrates. But if we’re comparing them to a non-starchy vegetable, say broccoli, then they definitely have higher levels of carbs.
Don’t let this put you off them! “Sweet potatoes provide more energy than non-starchy veggie alternatives, making them an exceptional fuel source for daily activity and especially athletic performance,” explains Ansari.
What is the healthiest way to eat sweet potatoes?
Research has found that steaming, roasting, baking, and boiling sweet potatoes, all preserve their nutritional value. Just be careful not to overcook them as this leads to a loss of these healthy nutrients, so keep your eye on that oven. A top tip is also to eat the skin of the potatoes, as there is still a great deal of fiber and antioxidants in it.
The vegetables contain fat-soluble vitamins – like vitamin A – that need fat to be absorbed into our bodies. By cooking or coating your veggies in olive oil or pairing it with avocado and nuts, you can enhance both the flavor and nutritional value of your food.