Health, HEALTH/FOOD

Sweet Potatoes – Why Aren’t We Eating More?

Sweet Potatoes – Why Aren’t We Eating MoreCall me an eavesdropper if you must, but I couldn’t avoid listening to a private conversation between two ladies as they do their early morning work out at the gym. Their chat caught my attention when I heard one of them blurted out, “Why the hell aren’t people eating more sweet potatoes in stead of the junk being pushed by companies?”

I pondered on the question after leaving the gym and subsequently decided to investigate the subject of the nutritional value of sweet potatoes.

Now to my utter amazement, I cannot fathom or understand why sweet potatoes are not eaten more often when compared to other staples.

In fact, in the U.S. comparative studies carried out by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) found that the sweet potato ranked highest in nutritional value in relations to other vegetables.

Using the criteria of fiber content, complex carbohydrates, protein, vitamin A and C, iron and Calcium, a score of 184 points placed the sweet potato at the top thus outclassing its nearest rival common potato by 100 points.

The sweet potato is king in the following: beta-carotene, vitamin A, vitamin B6 and vitamin C, fiber, thiamine, niacin, potassium and copper. They are also a good source of protein, calcium, and vitamin E.

Moreover, the numbers in its nutritional value are incredible: almost twice the recommended daily allowance of vitamin A, 42 percent of the recommendation for vitamin C, four times the RDA for beta carotene, and, when eaten with the skin, sweet potatoes have more fiber than oatmeal.

In addition, the sweet potato is high in antioxidant compared to other vegetables. It is also low in calories, thus making it ideal for weight management.

Its culinary uses in many countries are wide and varied. It ranges from using the young leaves and vines as vegetables to a snack or dessert drenched with honey.

On the other hand, it’s nonculinary uses include:

Dye for cloth

Animal fodder

Acquarium cleaning

Ornamentals for gardens

There is no doubt that sweet potatoes are chock full of goodies, so what are you waiting for to start indulging in its taste and experiencing its benefits. ∅

 Yvad Billings, Readers Bureau, fellow