Nutritional benefit is one of the top focuses for marketing potatoes in 2024.

According to Stockholm-based Lifesum’s list of five best diet changes to improve mental health, increasing consumption of root vegetables and other complex carbohydrates can help reduce symptoms of anxiety.

“Many people don’t realize the link between food and mental wellbeing,” said Signe Svanfeldt, lead nutritionist at Lifesum. “A nutritious, balanced diet positively impacts our energy and mood, as well as our gut microbiota, which influences our mental wellbeing.”

Earlier this year, the Idaho Potato Commission (IPC) shared 10 reasons to eat more Idaho potatoes, highlighting a variety of nutritional benefits.

“Idaho potatoes are one of the most nutrient-dense foods in the produce aisle,” said Jamey Higham, president and CEO, IPC. “Not to mention they’re versatile and affordable, making them the ideal staple for busy families focused on eating healthy.”

According to the IPC, Idaho potatoes contain the following essential nutrients:

  • Vitamin C
  • Potassium
  • Vitamin B6
  • Dietary fiber

The IPC pointed out that potatoes are also naturally gluten-free, making them a great carbohydrate option for gluten-free meal planning.

10 nutritional selling points for potatoes from the IPC

  1. Healthy carbohydrate: Idaho potatoes are the first vegetable to participate in the American Diabetes Association's Better Choices For Life program.
  2. Versatility: Potatoes pair perfectly with any protein, carb or vegetable, can be enjoyed any time of day and be prepared in hundreds of different ways.
  3. Gut health: When cooked and cooled, potatoes develop resistant starch, a type of fiber that acts similarly to soluble fiber, promoting gut health and metabolic benefits. Reheat those leftovers and enjoy an added nutritional benefit.
  4. Satiety: Idaho potatoes are a satisfying and filling food choice, thanks to their fiber content. The satiety index regularly ranks potatoes as one of, if not the most, satiating food available in a diet. 
  5. Energy: Idaho potatoes are an excellent source of complex carbohydrates, providing a sustained energy source for your body. The carbohydrates in potatoes are gradually released into the bloodstream, providing a steady supply of energy without causing rapid spikes and crashes in blood sugar levels.
  6. Heart health: Due to their impressive nutritional profile, Idaho potatoes are certified by the American Heart Association as a heart-healthy food.
  7. Antioxidants: Incorporating Idaho potatoes into your daily diet could contribute to reducing the risk of chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Potatoes are abundant in beneficial compounds such as flavonoids, carotenoids, and phenolic acids, which actively prevent the accumulation of harmful molecules.
  8. Many cooking methods: Experiment with baking, steaming, roasting, or grilling Idaho potatoes instead of frying, reducing the intake of added fats and calories while retaining nutrients. 
  9. Vitamin C in the skin: Including potato skins in your recipes can enhance your overall nutrient intake and promote digestive health due to the significant amount of vitamins and minerals. Vitamin C acts as an antioxidant, supporting the immune system and skin health. Consuming the skins also helps the environment by reducing food waste.
  10. Potassium: One potato has more potassium than a banana: Potassium is crucial for regulating blood pressure, nerve function, and muscle contractions.

This article is an excerpt from the May 2024 issue of Supermarket Perimeter. You can read the entire Potatoes feature and more in the digital edition here.