The nutritional benefits of orange-fleshed sweet potatoes

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maxresdefaultSweet potatoes have been found to have various nutritional value such as providing, Vitamin A,               dietary fiber, vitamin C, potassium, mineral ions, and vitamin B6. However the, orange fleshed ones have been identified to contain more of these beneficial nutrients providing more beta-carotene, which the body can turn into vitamin A.

“Orange-fleshed sweet potato is an important source of beta-carotene, the precursor to Vitamin A. Just 125g of fresh sweet potato roots from most orange-fleshed varieties contain enough beta-carotene to provide the body with the daily pro-vitamin A,” according to a study conducted by The International Potato Center on the health benefits of sweet potatoes.

This Vitamin A provided by the orange fleshed sweet potatoes is well known for its beauty benefits. It helps protect the skin against sun damage which is believed to contribute to certain chronic diseases such as cancer.

The orange sweet potato, which contains 77 per cent water, 20 per cent carbohydrate, 1.6 per cent protein, three per cent fiber and almost no fat, has also been found to have anti-carcinogenic properties thus helping in the reduction of the risk of breast cancer and ovarian cancer in women.

"Eating more fruits and vegetable that contain beta-carotene such as orange-fleshed sweet potatoes seems to decrease the risk of breast cancer in pre-menopausal women and who are at high risk of getting breast cancer, including those with a family history and those who use alcohol excessively,” this is according to a study by the US National Institutes of Health on the benefits of beta-carotene.

“Eating a diet rich in carotenoids, including beta-carotene, reduces the risk of ovarian cancer in women after menopause. Eating more beta-carotene in the diet seems to help prevent bronchitis and difficulty breathing in smokers with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) but beta-carotene supplements do not.”

Besides skin care protection and risk reduction of cancer, orange-fleshed sweet potatoes help in weight loss. The fiber contained in them, reduces food consumption as it is slow in digestion thus food is retained in the stomach for a long time preventing overindulgence.

“One of the main ways that sweet potatoes can help you lose weight is due to their high amount of dietary fiber. Fiber is bulky, meaning that foods that contain high amounts of it will take up a lot of room in your stomach. This helps to keep one feeling full for a long period of time, thereby preventing overeating. It also takes a long time for high fiber foods to leave your stomach and enter your digestive tract thereby reducing the chances of high calorie intake and potential weight gain,” read an article on How sweet potatoes help you lose weight by online diet journal website FitDay.

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