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posted by janrinok on Friday January 20 2023, @01:23PM   Printer-friendly
from the hot-potato dept.

Though spuds may not have all of the same benefits as other vegies, they can still be part of a healthy diet - so long as they're prepared the right way:

With low or no-carbohydrate diets rising in popularity in recent times, the humble potato is now regularly overlooked in favour of other vegetables.

In fact, research literature has previously indicated potatoes may have a detrimental effect on health, such as possibly increasing the likelihood of developing Type 2 diabetes.

However, new Edith Cowan University (ECU) research has shown while spuds may not have all the same benefits as some other vegetables — such as lowering risk of Type 2 diabetes — health issues associated with potatoes may actually be due to how people are preparing them and what they're eating them with.

[...] "In previous studies, potatoes have been positively linked to incidence of diabetes, regardless of how they're prepared — but we found that's not true," Mr Pokharel said.

"In Denmark, people consume potatoes prepared in many different ways; in our study, we could distinguish between the different preparation methods.

"When we separated boiled potatoes from mashed potatoes, fries or crisps, boiled potatoes were no longer associated with a higher risk of diabetes: they had a null effect.

[...] Mr Pokharel said findings from the study indicate vegetables could play a key role in reducing Type 2 diabetes, as people who ate a lot of leafy greens and cruciferous vegies such as spinach, lettuce, broccoli and cauliflower had a significantly lower risk of developing the condition.

[...] "Regarding potatoes, we can't say they have a benefit in terms of type 2 diabetes, but they also aren't bad if prepared in a healthy way.

"We should separate potatoes and other vegetables in regard to messaging about disease prevention but replacing refined grains such as white rice and pasta with potatoes can improve your diet quality because of fibre and other nutrients found in potatoes."

Journal Reference:
Pratik Pokharel, Cecilie Kyrø, Anja Olsen, et al.; Vegetable, But Not Potato, Intake is Associated With a Lower Risk of Type 2 Diabetes in the Danish Diet, Cancer and Health Cohort. Diabetes Care 2022; dc220974.

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  • (Score: 2) by Barenflimski on Friday January 20 2023, @01:38PM (12 children)

    by Barenflimski (6836) on Friday January 20 2023, @01:38PM (#1287726)

    People don't like potatoes? News to me.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @02:07PM (4 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @02:07PM (#1287728)

      These days carbs in general are evil and will turn you fat and diabetic and potatoes are seen by some as the worst thing to eat from that standpoint.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @02:24PM (1 child)

        by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @02:24PM (#1287729)

        Soaking potatoes in water reduces starch though, potentially making it healthier and improving the way it cooks. Better for french fries.

        • (Score: 3, Informative) by Immerman on Friday January 20 2023, @03:27PM

          by Immerman (3985) on Friday January 20 2023, @03:27PM (#1287739)

          You're talking about what's basically a solid block of starch grown as a form of dense energy storage.

          While rinsing off the starches dissolved in liquid does change the cooking properties a bit, it has a negligible effect on the total starch content.

      • (Score: 2) by Barenflimski on Friday January 20 2023, @04:12PM (1 child)

        by Barenflimski (6836) on Friday January 20 2023, @04:12PM (#1287749)

        I guess I don't follow enough TikTok's and "news" to know that potatoes went from saving the Irish to killing people.

        Have I missed anything else important?

        Think I need to get me a plate of fries with my frijoles later today. Is Ketchup still a vegetable?

        • (Score: 3, Informative) by mcgrew on Friday January 20 2023, @07:08PM

          by mcgrew (701) <> on Friday January 20 2023, @07:08PM (#1287770) Homepage Journal

          Potatoes didn't save the Irish, they almost killed everyone on their island. The king of England decreed that Ireland would can corned beef (most Irish couldn't afford corned beef) and grow potatoes, and a single species at that. A fungal disease hit and completely destroyed every single potato in Ireland, causing mass starvation and history's biggest migration to America. My ancestors, though, came here long before that. Cromwell exiled them.


    • (Score: 2) by HiThere on Friday January 20 2023, @02:58PM (1 child)

      by HiThere (866) Subscriber Badge on Friday January 20 2023, @02:58PM (#1287733) Journal

      "Like" is a peculiar word. When talking about food it can be "like the taste of" or it can be "like the expected results of eating". These meanings are frequently opposite.

      Javascript is what you use to allow unknown third parties to run software you have no idea about on your computer.
      • (Score: 4, Funny) by BlueCoffee on Friday January 20 2023, @03:27PM

        by BlueCoffee (18257) on Friday January 20 2023, @03:27PM (#1287740)

        The expected result of eating is poop, which I don't like at all, but shit happens.

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @06:53PM (2 children)

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @06:53PM (#1287764)

      > When we separated boiled potatoes from mashed potatoes, fries or crisps,

      I guess tfa didn't mention microwaving or baking potatoes? After washing and cutting out any bad bits, I'm always happy with nuked spuds, typically a couple of minutes, then flip upside down and a couple of more minutes (longer if more than one potato.)

      I also cut out the eyes, because I was taught that as a kid...but it may not make enough difference to matter? See [] One side benefit of digging out the eyes is that it exposes the layer below the skin--if there is a green layer it is toxic--that potato goes in the compost.

      • (Score: 2) by liar on Friday January 20 2023, @08:22PM (1 child)

        by liar (17039) on Friday January 20 2023, @08:22PM (#1287792)

        That's pretty much what I do too. It could also be that what we put *on* the potatoes is problematic. I cook mine in the microwave 9 mins for one, 10 for two, and cut them into slices afterwards and put zero sugar, natural flavor (no added flavor) Greek yogurt on them (tastes to me like sour cream, but with live cultures)which seems to help with digesting them too.

        Noli nothis permittere te terere.
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @08:30PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @08:30PM (#1287796)

          Good idea! I put on either a small amount of butter (half a "restaurant pat") or some sour cream, but I'm going to try plain yogurt (low fat) next time.

          For an occasional treat I'll use somewhat more butter and a healthy sprinkle of curry powder, informally mashed together inside the skin (after cutting in half) . This is reserved for times I'm home alone because others in this house don't like the strong smell of curry.

    • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Friday January 20 2023, @07:02PM

      by mcgrew (701) <> on Friday January 20 2023, @07:02PM (#1287767) Homepage Journal

      Not "people", nutritionists. I don't know anybody who doesn't like potatoes, except that Martian, and he's fictional.

      I wonder why they didn't mention baked?

    • (Score: 2) by Azuma Hazuki on Saturday January 21 2023, @04:10PM

      by Azuma Hazuki (5086) on Saturday January 21 2023, @04:10PM (#1287914) Journal

      My girlfriend hates them. She also dislikes bitter melon, eggplant, and some nightshades, which makes me think she's a supertaster for alkaloids (solanine, etc) found in these products. It is the one thing we diametrically disagree on. Like any good gopnitsa, I love potatoes in all forms but especially boiled and baked =P

      I am "that girl" your mother warned you about...
  • (Score: 2) by mcgrew on Friday January 20 2023, @06:58PM (2 children)

    by mcgrew (701) <> on Friday January 20 2023, @06:58PM (#1287766) Homepage Journal

    “In our study, people who ate the most potatoes also consumed more butter, red meat and soft drink — foods known to increase your risk of Type 2 diabetes,” he said.

    “When you account for that, boiled potatoes are no longer associated with diabetes. It’s only fries and mashed potatoes, the latter likely because it is usually made with butter, cream and the like.”

    I don't believe there's been a day in my life since I was weaned that I haven't eaten potatoes, and I'll be 71 this year. No diabetes at all. But my oldest daughter has diabetes. So does her mother. Susceptibility to diabetes, like to many if not all diseases, is heritable. People are shocked when they find out how old I am and ask how I look so young. I say "I chose my grandparents wisely."

    That said, just because susceptibility to a disease runs in families doesn't mean you can't get it. My dad was an electrical lineman for forty years, and at age 84 died from one of the two cancers everyone he had worked with died from in their '50s and '60s; the transformer oil was PCBs. His Uncle Barney smoked cigarettes for seventy years, starting at age 12 and stopping at 82 when a skin cancer on his lip scared him. He lived another ten years. Grandma (his little sister) never smoked and lived a hundred years.

    OTOH MY Uncle Oscar, my mom's sister Aunt Hazelr's husband, died of a heart attack in his forties, as did all four of their sons. Aunt Hazel, Mom's big sister, lived 98 years.

    Now watch, I'll get hit and killed by space debris tomorrow. It'll be the first!

    • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @08:03PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 20 2023, @08:03PM (#1287787)

      It can be such a crap shoot of genetics, lifestyle, and chemical exposure. Our family tree also has the gamut of people living in to their 90s and dying young--sometimes due to things that are generally not a problem now, like the lingering affects of polio which curtailed my paternal grandmother's mobility and almost certainly reduced her lifespan after surviving the initial disease. Then we've got one combat KIA, a great-great-granny who I know almost nothing about except "she lived well in to her 90s" and the dude who was in his 50s back in the 70s when we had very few options for cancer. They did an exploratory (no MRI back then) and closed him right back up because there were too many tumors. Sent him home with orders to drink and smoke however much he felt like, and 2 months to live.

    • (Score: 2) by pdfernhout on Sunday January 22 2023, @02:23AM

      by pdfernhout (5984) on Sunday January 22 2023, @02:23AM (#1287992) Homepage []
      "The New York Times bestselling author of Eat to Live and Super Immunity and one of the country’s leading experts on preventive medicine offers a scientifically proven, practical program to prevent and reverse [Type 2] diabetes—without drugs.
          At last, a breakthrough program to combat the rising diabetes epidemic and help millions of diabetics, as well as those suffering with high blood pressure and heart disease. Joel Fuhrman, M.D. Research director of the Nutritional Research Foundation, shows you how to live a long, healthy, and happy life—disease free. He offers a complete health transformation, starting with a diet with a high nutrient-per-calorie ratio that can be adapted for individual needs.
          Dr. Fuhrman makes clear that we don’t have to “control” diabetes. Patients can choose to follow better nutritional guidelines that will control it for them, even before they have lost excess weight. The end result is a medical breakthrough—a comprehensive reversal of the disease.

      One review comment: "Diabetes has become an American epidemic: In 1958, 1.5 million were diagnosed with the disease; today nearly 26 million suffer from the malady. Epidemic or not, it need not be a death sentence or even a lifelong condition. Dr. Joel Fuhrman's The End of Diabetes charts a course to prevent and reverse pre-diabetes and diabetes with an eating plan. For those with type 2 diabetes, his program can first reduce medications and then eliminate all meds within three to six months. People with the more serious type 1 condition will likely experience fewer highs and laws and require less insulin."

      Git microbes may make a big difference too. And your gut microbes can change when you eat differently.

      Of course, changing eating patterns is easier said than done. Other resources on that:
      "Logical Miracles: Second Edition, edited by Dor Mullen" []
      "Why is it so hard to eat right? What does it take to turn around the habits that keep us sick, fat and depressed? Logical Miracles is a collection of stories by people in The Suppers Programs who found their personal solutions by experimenting with whole food. In an environment of nonjudgment, we cook, taste and feel our way to health, and we forge new friendships based on healthy living."

      "Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead 1 & 2" []
      "This life-changing documentary follows Joe Cross, who starts his healthy journey 100 pounds overweight, loaded up on steroids and suffering from a debilitating autoimmune disease. In the mirror he saw a 310-pound man whose gut was bigger than a beach ball and a path laid out before him that wouldn’t end well — with one foot already in the grave, the other wasn’t far behind. “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead” is an inspiring film that chronicles Joe’s personal mission to regain his health."
      "After the film “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead” documented his 60 day juice fast, Joe Cross vowed never to go on camera again. Since then, more than 20 million people have seen the film and Joe realized there’s still a lot for him to learn about becoming healthy and staying that way. “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead 2” taps into the tsunami of positive change that’s sweeping the world when it comes to what we eat."

      The same improved eating style helps prevent heart disease and cancer too:
      "The End of Heart Disease: The Eat to Live Plan to Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease" []

      "G-BOMBS: The anti-cancer foods that should be in your diet right now" []
      "Looking for the biggest bang for your caloric buck? Remember the acronym G-BOMBS, which stands for Greens, Beans, Onions, Mushrooms, Berries and Seeds. These foods fuel your body with protective micronutrients and phytochemicals that support your immune defenses and have a wide range of health-promoting effects. And here’s a bonus: They’re delicious!"

      As Dr. Fuhrman writes in "Eat to Live", genes may give us weak links, but whether those weak links get pulled on is a result of diet and lifestyle.

      A potato-based variant of this sort of thinking (whereas Fuhrman emphasizes beans more and would claim his approach is somewhat better, but still agrees a lot with McDougall overall):
      "The Starch Solution: Eat the Foods You Love, Regain Your Health, and Lose the Weight for Good" by John McDougall (Author), Mary McDougall " []
      "Fear of the almighty carb has taken over the diet industry for the past few decades—from Atkins to Dukan—even the mere mention of a starch-heavy food is enough to trigger an avalanche of shame and longing. But the truth is, carbs are not the enemy!
            Bestselling author John A. McDougall and his kitchen-savvy wife, Mary, prove that a starch-rich diet can actually help you attain your weight loss goals, prevent a variety of ills, and even cure common diseases. By fueling your body primarily with carbohydrates rather than proteins and fats, you will feel satisfied, boost energy, and look and feel your best.
            Based on the latest scientific research, this easy-to-follow plan teaches you what to eat and what to avoid, how to make healthy swaps for your favorite foods, and smart choices when dining out. Including a 7-Day Sure-Start Plan, helpful weekly menu planner, and nearly 100 delicious, affordable recipes, The Starch Solution is a groundbreaking program that will help you shed pounds, improve your health, save money, and change your life."

      All the best in finding something that works for your family.

      The biggest challenge of the 21st century: the irony of technologies of abundance used by scarcity-minded people.
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 21 2023, @08:35AM (1 child)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 21 2023, @08:35AM (#1287863)

    Potatoes are a superfood if you were an Irish farmer or similar who needed about 5000kcal/day.

    If you eat 5kg of baked potatoes you get: []
    (See: [] )

    You'd get the vitamin D from the sun. So what you'd lack would be fats, vitamin A, vitamin B12, vitamin E and selenium.

    Calcium and fats you might be able to get from milk and other dairy. Maybe some selenium too.

    Sweet potatoes would solve the vitamin A issues but they tend to be higher in sugar. But doesn't look like it's killing the Okinawans who eat about half a kg or more of sweet potatoes a day.

    • (Score: 1, Interesting) by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 21 2023, @01:01PM

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday January 21 2023, @01:01PM (#1287887)

      > Irish farmer or similar who needed about 5000kcal/day.

      Reminds me of the bicycle Race Across AMerica where the riders typically go for 24+ hours straight. They need a LOT of kcals and often potato starch is part of the race diet. Here's one paper (of many) on the topic, []

      Energy turnover at the Race Across AMerica (RAAM) - a case report
      B Knechtle 1 , A Enggist, T Jehle
              PMID: 16037895 DOI: 10.1055/s-2004-821136


      We report about energy intake and energy expenditure in an official finisher of the Race Across AMerica (RAAM) in 2003. Energy intake from nutrition was continuously recorded. Energy expenditure was measured by continuous heart rate recording with a portable heart rate monitor POLAR S710 to estimate energy expenditure during physical activity. Our athlete (33 years, 179 cm, 73 kg, VO (2)max 60 ml . min (-1) . kg (-1), lactate threshold at 77%VO (2)max) finished the 4701-km cycling race with altitude differences amounting to 25,826 meters in 9 days 16 hours and 45 minutes in 4th place. He completed 470+/-72.9 km (372-541 km) per day with 2,582+/-1,576 (683-5,047) meters of altitude. During the whole race, he expended a total energy of 179,650 kcal with 17,965+/-2165 (15,100 - 23,280) kcal per day. Total energy intake was 96,124 kcal with an average of 9,612+/-1,500 (7,513-12,735) kcal per day. Of total ingested calories, 75.2% derived from carbohydrates, 16.2% from fat, and 8.6% from protein. He ingested an energy of 9,612+/-1,550 (7,513 - 12,735) kcal daily, consisting of 1,814+/-310 (1,336 - 2,354) g of carbohydrates, 172+/-47 (88-251) g of fat, and 207+/-52 (128-286) g of protein. The average daily energy deficiency amounted to 8,352+/-2,523 (4,425-13,631) kcal. A total deficiency of 83,526 kcal resulted after the race while the athlete lost 5 kg of body weight. These results provide data about energy intake and energy expenditure in the RAAM for future athletes, nutritionists and coaches. Further investigation should be performed in order to determine whether either muscle mass or body fat will be lost in extreme endurance cycling.