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Old 12-06-2011, 05:25 PM
 
2,607 posts, read 544,687 times
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I'm cooking dinner now. It's a vegan dumpling stew, so I'm using white potatoes and flour. I try to use sweet potatoes as much as possible, but they wouldn't be right with this. And instead of enjoying it, I'm feeling guilty about it being a high glycemic dish. Thinking "there goes my blood sugar!" and "I'm adding five pounds to my hips!"

But then I began to wonder what has changed. A well balanced, nutritious meal was considered to include white potatoes and bread, like a roll. And there were less diabetics and overweight people back in the day when people ate like this.

So---what changed?????
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Old 12-06-2011, 06:11 PM
 
Location: Nantahala National Forest, NC
17,860 posts, read 3,604,954 times
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Likely the advent of highly processed foods.

There is NOTHING wrong with potatoes...they have good nutrients and are especially good for you when eaten with skins. What people put ON them or how they cook them is an issue of course=fried/salty, butter/sour cream etc.

The "carb" obsession is relatively new....while the glycemic index is a great tool, it seems to me way too much is made of this unless diabetes etc is in the picture. No way am I going to give up one of the best meal sides ever...mashed potatoes. (use chicken broth and/or skim milk and reduced fat butter = good).
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Old 12-06-2011, 07:31 PM
 
Location: Wine Country
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Nothing wrong with a potato as long as it is not covered in fats. Carbs are not the enemy if they are complex carbs.
I agree that too much is made of the glycemic index. There is no need to complicate food. If you eat whole, unprocessed foods and stay away from prepackaged foods and simple carbs that are found in white breads, crackers, sugary stuff you will be fine. Diabetics are another story completely.
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Old 12-06-2011, 08:02 PM
 
Location: Wiesbaden, Germany
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We're not active like we used to be, so our bodies don't burn the fuel (carbs). All these modern "conveniences" end up costing us our girlish figures..
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Old 12-06-2011, 08:08 PM
 
Location: In a house
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Starches were never considered "good" for you, in my household when I was growing up, back when the Pterydactyls flew the skies of the Known World. They (white potatoes, bread, things made primarily with flour) were considered "empty" calories, because they contained little to no significant nutritional value. We were told to pack our calories with nutrition, and as long as we did that, we'd be okay.

So if we wanted sweets, then make sure those sweets had some nutritional function. Like - instead of a spoon full of sugar, have a peanutbutter and graham cracker sandwich. Instead of Kool Aid, have a milk shake. With starches, it was - instead of just a piece of bread and butter, use that bread to sop up the tomato sauce from our spaghetti plate. And replace just plain ordinary mashed potatoes, with mash and cheese, or mash with meat bits in it. Or skip the mash and have some spinach sauteed in olive oil and garlic (SO much better tasting, to me, than mashed potatoes).

Basically, we were taught that if you're going to fill your stomach with tasty things, it's best to make sure those tasty things contain nutrients other than ... starch.
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Old 12-06-2011, 09:19 PM
 
Location: Wine Country
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Here is some information about the misunderstood potato:


Nutritional Information

On Serving Contains:

Calories ..................110

Protein ................... 3 grams

Carbohydrate ......... 23 grams

Fat .......................... 0 grams

Dietary Fiber .......... 2710 mg

Sodium ................... 10 mg

Potassium ............... 750 mg



Serving Size : One Medium Potato (150 grams or about 1/3 pound)

To calculate nutritional value of a 250 gram potato (a typical baking potato) multiply values above by 1.6



Percentage of U.S. Recommended Daily Allowances for a Medium Potato

Protein .................. 6 %

Vitamin C ............. 50 %

Thiamin ................ 8 %

Riboflavin ............ 2 %

Niacin .................. 10 %

Iron ....................... 8 %

Vitamin B6 ........... 15 %

Folacin (folic acid). 8 %

Phosphorus ............ 8 %

Magnesium ............ 8 %

Zinc ....................... 2 %

Copper ... ............... 8 %

Pantothenic acid .... 4 %

Iodine .................... 15 %



THE NUTRIENT-DENSE POTATO

The potato is a nutrient-dense food. It provides good nutritional return for the calories. Why is nutrient density important? Our need for calories has probably decreased by one-third since the turn of the century because we aren't as active. But in general we still need about the same amount of nutrients as we did then. This means that in order to get all the nutrition we need without consuming too many calories, we must include many nutrient dense foods like potatoes in our diets. A medium-size potato (one third pound or 150 grams) has only about 110 calories, four to five percent of the average adult's total daily intake of calories, but provides much higher percentages of our needs for many nutrients. (See 'Nutrition in a Raw Potato') For a real potato lover, a medium-size potato may not be enough of a good thing. But even a 250-gram potato (a little over one-half pound) has only about 160 calories, and the larger size gives you a real nutrition bonus. The potato gives us a wide spectrum of valuable nutrients, including complex carbohydrates, often lacking in the American diet.

The potato is a good source of vitamin C and hard to get B6 and has long been known to be a storehouse of minerals. Exact needs for all minerals are not established yet. But, for example, the potato contains valuable supplies of such essential trace elements as manganese, chromium, selenium and molybdenum.

LOW SODIUM HIGH POTASSIUM POTATO

One current nutritional goal is to reduce the amount of sodium consumed. While research is not complete, it indicates that a typical potato provides less than 1 0 mg. of sodium - compared to a typical daily intake of more than 4,000 mg. On the other hand, many Americans need to be concerned about adequate supplies of potassium. Here again, it appears that for the typical potato-eating American, the potato supplies about 20 percent of the daily potassium needs.

FIBER

Fiber, almost entirely complex carbohydrates, has been the subject of renewed interest. Fiber is that part of the food we eat is not digested by the body but travels through and holds water, forming the bulk we need for eliminating solid waste. While official recommendations for fiber haven't been established, about six grams daily is considered desirable. Most Americans fall short of this amount. Potatoes can add to the overall fiber intake. An average serving provides about 10 percent of a desirable daily intake of fiber.

PROTEIN

Potatoes contain small amounts of protein. In fact, the protein in potatoes is among the best to be found in vegetables. So, potatoes offer a good inexpensive supplementary source of protein in menu planning.



IRON

Iron is a mineral that's hard to get in sufficient amounts and is lacking in many diets, particularly those of women, teen-age girls and young children. Although few foods contain large amounts of iron, potatoes are a very good source. When consumed on a daily basis (5 1/3 oz. average per person), potatoes furnish more iron than any other vegetable. And, whereas not all the iron content in all foods is available for body use, the iron in potatoes is highly usable by the body.

CARBOHYDRATES

The potato has been criticized for being "just a starch." There's a lot more to potatoes, of course, but the carbohydrates in potatoes are the most common form of complex carbohydrates and as such are important to a good diet. Carbohydrates are the body's primary source of fuel for energy. Experts say at least 50 percent of our daily body fuel should come from carbohydrates. Carbohydrates are of several types. Sugars are the most basic carbohydrates, the building blocks of complex carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates are longer chains of sugars, such as starches and fiber. Contrary to popular belief, gram for gram, carbohydrates have no more calories than protein and less than half that of fat. In fact, potatoes are virtually fat-free.

WHY THE FATTENING IMAGES

All too often the potato is guilty by allusion and association. Although the potato appears to be a bulky vegetable, it is 80 percent water, just a little less than in milk. Its association with high calorie toppings like butter, sour cream, gravy and mayonnaise dressing to name a few, puts the low calorie potato at a disadvantage. Just one tablespoon of butter will double the number of calories in a baked potato. There are many low calorie ways to prepare potatoes deliciously. Here are just a few tasty low/no calories ideas:

Toasted sesame seeds
Whipped butter and poppy seeds
A spoon full of stewed tomatoes and a bit of grated cheese
Melted butter or margarine thinned with lemon juice
A mix of dried herbs: parsley, chives, basil, dill
Mock sour cream (cottage cheese and lemon juice whipped in a blender)
Chopped onion with coarsely grated black pepper
Chive-spiked yogurt
Salsa
ABOUT THE CALORIES

Dieting needn't mean giving up foods. Authorities are opposed to fad reducing diets that rule out whole categories of foods. These diets rob us of valuable nutrients and are often harmful to health. Low carbohydrate/high protein diets give us an overdose of fat-and may be hazardous for many people including pregnant women and those with heart and kidney disease or high blood pressure. Fad diets force us to make needless sacrifices of foods we like to eat and, perhaps above all, do nothing to teach a plan for eating for-life that will prevent recurring bouts with excess weight. The best diet is one based on a variety of nutritious foods, and the potato offers a high return of nutrients for relatively few calories.

http://www.slhfarm.com/spudfacts.html (broken link)
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Old 12-07-2011, 06:43 AM
 
Location: In a house
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All that's true, UNLESS you're eating mashed potatoes or french fries. The reason for this, is because when you make mashed potatoes you peel the skin off. And when you make french *fries* - you drown all that goodness in fat, usually with the skin off (yes I know baked steak fries are not that, but baked steak fries are not "french fries.") Most of the nutrient goodness in the potato comes from the skin.

All the nutritional benefits of the potato, exist when you boil the potato, skin-on, discard the water, and eat the potato as is. The moment you "do" anything to it beyond that, is the moment you start to degrade its value. Most people don't like eating fresh boiled unflavored skin-on potatoes, or wouldn't even think to try it.
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Old 12-07-2011, 09:42 AM
 
Location: Wine Country
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Who says you have to boil it? You can bake it. I love baked potatoes with a little drizzle of olive oil, or salsa, or a little pesto.
I make oven oven fries too that are delicious. And its not just the skin that has the nutrients.
I also cut them up and put them in a roasting pan with some carrots and roast them.
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Old 12-07-2011, 07:58 PM
 
Location: Everywhere and Nowhere
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I don't think potatoes are the issue today so much as things like 20 oz. sugared drinks. It's really all the refined sugar people eat and drink that's the culprit.
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Old 12-08-2011, 11:00 AM
 
Location: Wine Country
4,861 posts, read 5,924,192 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CAVA1990 View Post
I don't think potatoes are the issue today so much as things like 20 oz. sugared drinks. It's really all the refined sugar people eat and drink that's the culprit.
But it so much easier to blame the potato!
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