March is National Nutrition Month, when the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics reminds everyone to return to the basics of healthy eating. It is also the time of year when the Academy celebrates expertise of registered dietitian nutritionists as the food and nutrition experts.
Potatoes are packed with healthful carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and fiber. If you eat a medium baked potato, including the skin, you'll get nearly 4 grams of fiber, 2 milligrams of iron and 926 milligrams of potassium. Be sure to wash the potato well and remove any obvious blemishes before cooking.
There are different ways to prepare them, so try these tips to get started.
- Don't toss the skins. Potato skins are fiber-rich, about 2 grams per ounce. Potato skins also contain vitamins B and C, iron, calcium, potassium and other nutrients. Potato skin also provides lots of fiber, about 2 grams per ounce.
- It's about the phytochemicals. Potatoes contain phytochemicals, which are nutrients that are being studied for their role in protecting us from diseases, such as cancer and heart disease.
- Dress them. Make a potato salad by tossing boiled new potatoes with a light vinaigrette. You can also use potatoes in stews and soups to add some thickness and texture.
- More of them to love! Did you know there are more than 10,000 varieties of potatoes? They come in different shapes, sizes and colors — ranging from white to black to red, yellow and purple. And, don't forget the sweet potato! Delicious as a snack or side dish, they are rich in fiber, beta carotene and vitamins C and B6.