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    Posted November 18, 2012 by
    Laval, Quebec

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    Potatoes and pH


    Why the Bad Reputation


    Potatoes have a bad reputation due to being cooked in oil or deep fried, the french fry, which leads to heart disease and because of the low carb diets, with potatoes being high on the glycmic index.


    Trans fatty acids, partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, can increase bad LDL and reduce good HDL cholesterol levels, which can lead to heart disease.


    Potatoes and pH


    Potatoes are actually very nutritious and high in potassium and phosphorus, which can help prevent acid-base imbalance or acidic blood pH, or macromineral deficiencies.


    Drinking potato broth everyday is a recommended liquid therapy for Acid/Alkali Imbalance - (Prescription for Nutritional Healing Fourth Edition by Phyllis A. Balch p. 142)


    The Good Reputation and Interesting History Facts


    Introduced to Europe by Spain in 1536, the potato was subsequently conveyed by European mariners to territories and ports throughout the world -- Once established in Europe, the potato soon became an important food staple and field crop.


    French physician Antoine Parmentier studied the potato intensely and in Examen chymique des pommes de terres (Paris, 1774) showed their enormous nutritional value. King Louis XVI and his court eagerly promoted the new crop, with Queen Marie Antoinette even wearing a headdress of potato flowers at a fancy dress ball.


    Potatoes yielded from two to four times more calories per acre than grain did, and eventually came to dominate the food supply in eastern Europe. Boiled or baked potatoes were cheaper than rye bread, just as nutritious, and did not require a gristmill for grinding.


    Throughout Europe, the most important new food in the 19th century was the potato, which had three major advantages over other foods for the consumer: its lower rate of spoilage, its bulk (which easily satisfied hunger), and its cheapness.


    In Britain, the potato promoted economic development by underpinning the Industrial Revolution in the 19th century. It served as a cheap source of calories and nutrients that was easy for urban workers to cultivate on small backyard plots. Potatoes became popular in the north of England, where coal was readily available, so a potato-driven population boom provided ample workers for the new factories.





    Potato, raw, with peel
    Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
    Energy321 kJ (77 kcal)
    Carbohydrates19 g
    Starch15 g
    Dietary fiber2.2 g
    Fat0.1 g
    Protein2 g
    Water75 g
    Thiamine (Vit. B1)0.08 mg (6%)
    Riboflavin (Vit. B2)0.03 mg (2%)
    Niacin (Vit. B3)1.1 mg (7%)
    Vitamin B60.25 mg (19%)
    Vitamin C20 mg (33%)
    Calcium12 mg (1%)
    Iron1.8 mg (14%)
    Magnesium23 mg (6%)
    Phosphorus57 mg (8%)
    Potassium421 mg (9%)
    Sodium6 mg (0%)
    Percentages are relative to US recommendations for adults.

    The potato contains vitamins and minerals, as well as an assortment of , such as carotenoids and polyphenols. A medium-size 150 g (5.3 oz) potato with the skin provides 27 mg of vitamin C (45% of the Daily Value (DV)), 620 mg of potassium (18% of DV), 0.2 mg vitamin B6 (10% of DV) and trace amounts of thiamin, riboflavin, folate, niacin, magnesium, phosphorus, iron, and zinc. The fiber content of a potato with skin (2 g) is equivalent to that of many whole grain breads, pastas, and cereals.


    In terms of nutrition, the potato is best known for its carbohydrate content (approximately 26 grams in a medium potato). The predominant form of this carbohydrate is starch. A small but significant portion of this starch is resistant to digestion by enzymes in the stomach and small intestine, and so reaches the large intestine essentially intact. This resistant starch is considered to have similar physiological effects and health benefits as fiber: It provides bulk, offers protection against colon cancer, improves glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, lowers plasma cholesterol and triglyceride concentrations, increases satiety, and possibly even reduces fat storage. The amount of resistant starch in potatoes depends much on preparation methods. Cooking and then cooling potatoes significantly increased resistant starch. For example, cooked potato starch contains about 7% resistant starch, which increases to about 13% upon cooling.


    The nutrients of the potato seem to be fairly evenly distributed between the flesh and the skin. For a medium potato, with and without the skin, nutritiondata.com gives the following:



    NutrientWithout skin (156 g) (% RDA)With skin (173 g) (% RDA)
    Vitamin C3328
    Vitamin B62327
    Pantothenic Acid97
    Dietary Fiber915



    Almost all the protein content of a potato is contained in a thin layer just under its skin.


    The cooking method used can significantly impact the nutrient availability of the potato.


    Potatoes are often broadly classified as high on the glycemic index (GI) and so are often excluded from the diets of individuals trying to follow a low-GI diet. In fact, the GI of potatoes can vary considerably depending on type (such as red, russet, white, or Prince Edward), origin (where it was grown), preparation methods (i.e., cooking method, whether it is eaten hot or cold, whether it is mashed or cubed or consumed whole, etc.), and with what it is consumed (i.e., the addition of various high-fat or high-protein toppings).


    The Good Reputation and Interesting History Facts information taken from Wikipedia

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