Reconsidering Our Relationship With Potatoes

Potatoes sometimes get a bad rap.

It’s hard to know where potatoes’ negative connotations stem from.. Perhaps it’s the way the humble potato is often made into not so nutritious options like deep fried chips and hash browns. Or, perhaps it’s their white colour, after years of being told that brown breads and pastas are healthier for us than the more heavily processed white counterparts. Whatever the reason, we say it’s time to invite potatoes back to the table, and here’s why! 

They’re a great source of fibre

Whilst most vegetables pack a fibre punch, potatoes have a special type of fibre called ‘resistant starch’. Resistant starch is a type of prebiotic that makes it all the way to your large bowel without being broken down (i.e it literally ‘resists’ digestion). Not only does fibre help us to feel satisfied, but the healthy bacteria in your gut love this type of fibre, and use it as a fuel source to create other gut loving molecules! Interestingly, though hot potato does have fibre, this particular type of fibre forms in potatoes once they’ve been cooked then cooled – another reason to love your leftovers!

Filled with vitamins and minerals

Possibly because of their bland colour, potatoes often aren’t viewed to be very nutritious, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Here’s a few (maybe surprising) examples of a potatoes impressive nutrition resume, found in just ONE medium size potato:

  • More than double the amount (1200mg) of potassium than what is found in one medium banana, which our bodies need for water and electrolyte balance.
  • About 20% of the recommended daily intake (RDI) of vitamin C, which is not only helpful for connective tissues and immune system function but can also be helpful for iron absorption when paired with iron rich foods!
  • About 20% of the RDI of vitamin B6, which helps nervous system function and can contribute to reduced tiredness and fatigue.  
  • Nearly 16% of the RDI of Niacin (vitamin B3), for normal structure and function of our skin.

And of course, they’re inexpensive and versatile! 

Let’s be honest, nutrition isn’t the only factor we consider when planning out our diets! Potatoes are reasonably priced most of the year and they last well in the pantry if you don’t get a chance to use them right away. It’s no secret they’re a very talented player in the vegetable game – grate them into fritters, mash them, roast them, blend them into soups, even throw thin batons of potato into your next stir fry! They soak up flavour and pair well with almost every spice in the book, add fresh or dried herbs like sage, oregano and thyme next time you roast them for a flavour sensation that never goes out of fashion!

All in all it pays to not shy away from including potatoes in your diet, and we say they’ve been unfairly made the villain for far too long. When it comes to portion size, a fist sized potato is typically considered a serving, so is a good place to start. Enjoy!

Potatoes will now be incorporated into our Fresh Start recipes! Look out for them here.

Catherine ‘Cucumber’

Dietitian, My Food Bag

As My Food Bag’s nutrition guru, Catherine makes sure all our recipes and products follow Nadia’s ‘Nude Food’ philosophy. She works closely with departments across the whole business including the Development Kitchen, Innovation and Marketing! “I have always loved people, food and science in equal parts, so I decided to base my career off nutrition science and become a Registered Dietitian. I like helping people to understand what I like to call ‘down-to-earth’ nutrition – no fads, detoxes, or buzz words here!” Her My Food Bag journey started a few years ago, when she was part of our Customer Love team during her studies. Before returning to My Food Bag, Catherine worked as a clinical Dietitian at a hospital.

When it comes to food, this foodie’s favourites couldn’t be more different! On the one hand, she can’t go without a good bread (especially a sandwich loaded with veggies!), and on the other hand she sneaks spinach into anything and everything that she can. When she’s not working, you’ll find her getting outdoors, escaping the city for a big walk and a picnic lunch, or enjoying the sunshine with live music and friends.

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