Followers of low-carb diets give regular potatoes a bad rap. They are not exactly good for you when dropped into a deep fryer, but potatoes are packed with powerful nutrients and antioxidants-compounds that fight free radicals. The ORAC value (a measure of the total antioxidants in 100 grams) for a medium baked potato with skin is a healthy 1,680, while that of a baked sweet potato with skin is 766. Compare those with the values for carrots, either cooked (317) or raw (666).
Maintain blood pressure
Bananas are famous for their potassium-a mineral that helps control our blood pressure. But while a banana has nine percent of your daily needs, a baked regular potato has twice as much-20 percent-and a sweet one has 12 percent. But watch how you cook them: Cubing potatoes before boiling can reduce potassium by 75 percent. The best way to maintain it? Bake with the skin on.
Inhibit cancer cell growth
A sweet potato‘s orange colour comes from beta-carotene: the darker the hue, the higher the content. Like other carotenoids, beta-carotene turns on a gene that encourages our cells to communicate. While normal cells “listen” to their neighbours, cancer cells don’t communicate, and act on their own. Studies at the Cancer Research Center of Hawaii found that encouraging cells to “talk” allows normal cells to send growth-inhibiting signals to abnormal ones. Canada’s Food Guide advises at least one orange vegetable a day (a serving is ½ cup/125 mL).