One food that has become a staple in my home and lifestyle is the Sweet Potato as it is classified as a Super Food. I love them for so many reasons. Before going plant-based over five years ago I think I may have had a sweet potato a couple times in my life and if there was an option between a sweet potato and another side dish the other side dish won. Now I love them for their flavor, nutrient density, and low caloric value to help keep me healthy, fueled and lean for racing. Here I’ll share some interesting facts about the sweet potato and a few things to consider when making at home or choosing them when eating out.
- Great for weight loss!!! It is the most satiating food so it fills you up the most while being low in calories
- The healthiest vegetable on the planet states the World Health Organization
- People of Okinawa, Japan have one of the highest longevity rates in the world – 69% of their caloric intake is from consuming sweet potatoes
- The cheapest vegetable based on nutrient value by dollar
- Full of anti-inflammatory/cancer properties
- Look at some of the great nutrition information from a medium (5 inch long) sweet potato… I have the equivalent of two when I eat so it’s loaded with a great amount of nutrients while low in calories:
- Calories – 112
- Fiber – 3.9g
- Protein – 2g
- Carbohydrates (not refined…these are the great carbs!) – 26g
- Best way to cook:
- Boiling – keeps the nutrients intact the most (and keep the skin on)
- Baking or air frying – baking or air frying does strip some of the nutrients away but it’s still loaded; both are a great alternative if not boiling. Frying in oil can produce carcinogen properties which of course we want to avoid as well as adding unnecessary fat and calories.
- Additional ideas for eating:
- As I noted earlier, I had sweet potatoes only a couple times in my life prior to making the switch to a plant-based lifestyle. Now I have them 1-2 times a week and it’s not uncommon for me to have a very large sweet potato for lunch and sometimes using a buffalo or dipping sauce on the side…and that’s it. I prepare them by cutting them into french fry shapes and bake them in the air fryer. Being that it’s the most satiating food it fills me for hours without consuming a lot of calories in the process.
- Instead of dipping in a sauce you can sprinkle cinnamon on them and it hits the sweet tooth like a dessert
- Puree cooked sweet potatoes with bananas, maple syrup and cinnamon topped with walnuts. I just tried this dessert idea guessing at the quantities and it came out great!
- When eating out there is a good chance they are prepared in an oil and be careful with other toppings like butter and cheese that are unhealthy. I ask how they are prepared if I am not sure.
- Look for a sweet potato burger & sweet potato dessert recipe and video from Lauren and I coming soon to The Healthy Giraffe YouTube Channel.
If you have other sweet potato recipes please share.
– Add Health to Your Life
The Featured Picture:
- Top left – cut sweet potato into cubes for boiling
- Bottom left – sliced into fries in the air fryer
- Top right – the sweet potato and banana dessert
- Bottom right – the healthiest way to prepare sweet potatoes