Sweet Potatoes are the Perfect Food

Sweet potatoes rate high in the list of foods that can help us achieve optimum heath -that state of physical and mental well being, accompanied by high levels of energy and a strong, perfectly balanced immune system- and you might wonder why. Wonder no more and read.

Find Why Sweet Potatoes are the Perfect Food

Sweet potatoes rate high in the list of foods that can help us achieve optimum heath -that state of physical and mental well being, accompanied by high levels of energy and a strong, perfectly balanced immune system- and you might wonder why. Wonder no more.

Here are 8 reasons why

Sweet potatoes are high in fiber (4g - one medium sized sweet potato)

And also fat free, therefore saturated fat free too, low in sodium, and low in cholesterol.

A sweet way to get good nutrition

Not only are they a great source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Manganese, Vitamin B6, sweet potatoes are also a good way to get copper, iron, dietary fiber, and potassium.

They have proteins with potent antioxidant effects

The latest research studies focused on two areas of health benefit. The unique root stores proteins that have been observed to have significant antioxidant capacities. In one study, the proteins had about one-third the antioxidant activity of glutathione - one of the body's most impressive internally produced antioxidants. More research is needed.

"Anti-diabetic" food

Recently the sweet potato has been classified as an "anti-diabetic" food. They have been given this label because of some animal studies in which the potato helped in stabilizing blood sugar levels and lowered insulin resistance. Some of these blood sugar regulatory properties may come from the fact that sweet potatoes are concentrated in carotenoids. More research is needed in this area.

Antioxidant-rich, anti-inflammatory food

As a wonderful source vitamin A -in the form of beta-carotene- and a good source of vitamin C, they have healing properties as an antioxidant food. Both beta-carotene and vitamin C are very powerful antioxidants. Sweet potatoes are also rich in vitamin B6, which has been associated with decreasing the risk of heart attack and stroke.

Protection against emphysema

If you smoke or are frequently exposed to secondhand smoke, then making vitamin A-rich foods, such as sweet potatoes, part of your healthy way of eating, may save your life; as research conducted at Kansas State University suggests. A common carcinogen in cigarette smoke induces vitamin A deficiency, and a diet rich in vitamin A can help counter this effect, greatly reducing your chances of getting emphysema.

A nutritional powerhouse

Just 4 ounces of cooked pulp supply 2 grams of protein, 24.6 mg of vitamin C, 3.4 grams of fiber, 20 mg of magnesium, 28 mg of calcium, 22.6 mcg of folic acid, 21822 I.U. of vitamin A, and 348 mg of potassium. And that's for only a half cup serving. The skins, which are completely edible, add even more fiber.

They work well in some of the most popular diets

South Beach Diet, Atkins Diet, and Sugar busters Diet have all listed the sweet potato as a good carb. This is because among root vegetables, sweet potatoes have the lowest glycemic index rating. The sweet potato is slow to digest, causing a smooth and steady rise in blood sugar so you feel satisfied longer.

Sweet potatoes - food picture.

Tip

Sweet potatoes are a healthy addition to any Sunday roast. Cut them into large chunks and bake in the oven. Cinnamon goes well with sweet potatoes, sprinkle some on before baking or prepare cinnamon flavored sweet potato mash – add a little brown sugar.

Diced sweet potatoes - food picture.

Glossary

Antioxidants work in the body to eliminate free radicals.

Free radicals are chemicals that damage cells and cell membranes. Free radicals have been associated with the development of conditions like diabetic heart disease, atherosclerosis, and colon cancer. These nutrients also combat inflammation; they are helpful in reducing the severity of conditions where inflammation plays a role, such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, and asthma.

Roasted sweet potato and parsnip - food picture.

Optimum health is that state of physical and mental well being, accompanied by high levels of energy and a strong, perfectly balanced immune system