A Healthy You: Sweet potatoes are versatile, nutritious

By Cindy Gates
Sweet potatoes are native American plants that were the main source of nourishment for early homesteaders and for soldiers during the Revolutionary War.
These tuberous roots are among the most nutritious foods in the vegetable group. Sweet potatoes are packed with Vitamin A and C and fiber. A serving of sweet potatoes actually contain twice the recommended daily amount of Vitamin A needed.
Sweet potatoes are often confused with yams, but yams are large, starchy roots grown in Africa and Asia. Sweet potatoes are not potatoes either – they belong to a different plant family.
Sweet potatoes are an excellent alternative to potatoes and they can be versatile as well. They can be baked, boiled and made into French fries (you can make your own baked sweet potatoes fries).
There are 400 different types of sweet potatoes with skins varying in color from purple to red to orange to yellow. And inside flesh might be white, orange or yellow. Choose the darker varieties for more Vitamin A content. Place sweet potatoes in a dark, well ventilated location. Do not store sweet potatoes in the refrigerator.
Healthy You is a regular column about nutrition, healthy living and cancer care. It is written by Cindy Gates, RD and LD and the Cancer Center’s Oncology dietitian, herbalist and Certified Wellness Coach.

Post by Robin McGinty

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