Should Potatoes be Included in your Diet?

Hospital News - 7th AprilPotatoes are an excellent source of carbohydrates that should be eaten in moderation, say, dieticians.

For many people, potato fries, or chips, are a satisfying bowl of comfort food. However, what many are unaware off, is that one medium potato, is equivalent to 165 calories, and 37 grams carbohydrates when boiled, baked, or steamed and almost double the amount of calories when fried.

With French fries being a popular option at most eateries and fast food joints, people find themselves munching on potato fries, which have been included as a side dish in their meal.

Listed as one of top five most important crops worldwide, alongside wheat, corn, rice, and sugar, potatoes are an excellent source of carbohydrates that should be eaten in moderation, Sushma Girish Ghag, Dietitian, Aster Hospital told Gulf News.

Whether mashed, boiled, or baked, potatoes are a starchy tuber, that is low in fibre and digests rapidly providing energy as well as vitamin C, potassium and zinc, Ms. Sushma Ghag explained.

For those suffering from obesity, high blood sugar, diabetes, glucose intolerance, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and any type of cholesterol, consuming potatoes regularly, especially when fried will negatively impact their body.

“I would recommend average consumption of unfried potatoes, no more than three times a week for people who require a source of energy for sports, as well as those with low haemoglobin levels, are anaemic, or need to gain weight,” suggested Ms. Sushma Ghag.

Avoid eating potatoes if you suffer from any of the following:

  • Obesity
  • High blood sugar
  • Diabetes
  • Glucose intolerance
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
  • High triglyceride level or any type of cholesterol

Include boiled, baked, or mashed potatoes in your diet, no more than three times a week:

  • If you require a source of energy for sports
  • If you have low haemoglobin levels or are anaemic
  • If you need to gain weight
  • If you have no appetite and need to maintain a healthy BMI level
  • For heart health
  • To reduce blood pressure
  • To reduce inflammation
  • If you find difficulty chewing solid food due to old age
  • Mashed potatoes for babies as their energy requirement is high due to rapid growth and development

Ms. Sushma Ghag, Dietitian 

Aster Hospital Mankhool  

Sushama - Dietitian

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