A recent study published in the New England Journal of Medicine states that potatoes contribute to weight gain and diabetes even more so than sugary drinks.
In more sad news for the spud, the USDA plans on restricting potatoes from school lunches. The claim is that far too often when students are given the choice between peas and carrots or fries, the kids overwhelmingly choose fried goods.
Despite the fact that potatoes have become somewhat of a public enemy, (even McDonald’s is reducing the serving of French Fries in Happy Meals!), potatoes do have some health benefits when prepared properly. Both white and sweet potatoes contain healthy doses of fiber, protein, and vitamin C. The sweet potato also contains the daily recommended dose of vitamin A.
I think that the recent call for decreased starch and grease is a healthy move toward reducing obesity. However, it is important to remember that not all tubers are bad. And more often, it is the way they are fried or over-processed that makes them unhealthy.
What do you think? Should potatoes – fried or otherwise – be removed from the school cafeteria?
Dr. Bruce Feinberg