SWEET POTATOES: NUTRIENT CONTENTS AND HEALTH BENEFITS
Sweet potatoes are not only sweet but healthy food that brings a lot of benefit to you. It is root tuber (vegetable) usually orange- or yellow- fleshed. This sweet food has some special nutritional properties and is attracting attention from many researchers seeking answers to a lot of questions.
Sweet Potato Contains Nutrients
Sweet potatoes contain carbohydrates (substance that gives you energy), proteins, lipids (oils), and carotenoids (β-carotene: – a source of vitamin A). It also contains anthocyanins (a substance that adds color to some plants and makes them appear red, blue or purple). If you have seen black rice, black soybean or blueberry then you know what anthocyanins does to plants. In addition sweet potatoes contain other chemicals and minerals that your body requires for a variety of activities. It is an excellent source of Potassium, iron, vitamin A, vitamin C and fiber. Seems like a balanced diet isn’t it? These nutrients and chemicals are found in different parts of sweet potato such as its stem, stalk, leaves and tubers.
Sweet Potato Health Benefits
Sweet potatoes provide you energy for daily runs and supply you with antioxidants that support your body. Also because it is rich in potassium it helps to maintain your blood pressure. Its vitamin A content helps protect your eyes, improves your immunity and reduces your chances of developing breast cancer. Also eating sweet potato has lead to reduction in the number of children suffering from diarrhea. This was reported by a study conducted in some villages in Mozambique. Sweet potato can also protect you from diseases due to infections because it prevents microorganisms from growing inside you. It could also protect you from heart disease and diabetes mellitus since eating sweet potatoes prevents obesity.
Finally, and this is the best one, sweet potatoes could make you look younger and stronger. Yes, it has amazing anti-aging effect due to its abundant antioxidants and vitamins. So guys better start exploiting this great opportunity.
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Kraft, D. & DerMarderosian, A. (2016) the A – Z Guide to Food as Medicine. CRC Press, Taylor & Francis Group. USA
Tang, Y., Cai, W. & Xu, B (2015) ‘Profiles of Phenolics, Carotenoids & Antioxidative Capacities of Thermal Processed White, Yellow, Orange and Purple Sweet Potatoes Grown in Gulin, China’, Food Science and Human Wellness, 4 (2015) pp 123 -132. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com (accessed 19/06/2018)
Wang, S., Nie, Shaoping & Zhu, Fan (2016) ‘Chemical Constituents & Health Effects of Sweet Potato’, Food Research International, 89 (1)pp 90 – 116. Available from: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.foodres.2016.08.032 (accessed 19/06/2018)
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