Nutrition

Get your 5-10 a day: Sweet potatoes

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Author: Canadian Living

Nutrition

Get your 5-10 a day: Sweet potatoes

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A sweet tuber and an important crop in Central and South America, the sweet potato is a tender, rich-flavoured vegetable. Sweet potatoes grow on vines above the ground and spoil quickly, unlike the white potato, which despite its name is not related. Sweet potatoes have either a deep orange or creamy white flesh. Orange-coloured varieties are more common and become sweeter with age, although the white-fleshed sweet potatoes are favoured by many people.

Yams are often confused with sweet potatoes, but the true yam is native to Africa. Yams are larger than sweet potatoes, and have fewer nutrients. They are not related yet their names are mixed in the grocery store and can be substituted for each other in recipes.

How to choose and store sweet potatoes
Look for potatoes with clear skins that are well shaped and free of cracks. They keep well uncovered at room temperature for one week. Storing sweet potatoes in the refrigerator causes them to develop a hard core and an off taste. When moldy, spots and shrivels appear and they should be thrown out.

Nutrition
Its deep orange colour is a dead giveaway that the sweet potato is a rich source of beta-carotene. It is also a good source of vitamins C and E, both of which function as antioxidants and fight free radicals (harmful compounds in the body). Eating it as part of a meal increases absorption of carotene and vitamin E because fat improves their absorption.

Try the following recipes:
Roasted Sweet Potato Wedges
Sweet Potato Hash with Poached Egg and Pesto Chicken
Sweet Potato Soup
Chicken and Sweet Potato Simmer
Garlic Sweet Potato Fans


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Nutrition

Get your 5-10 a day: Sweet potatoes

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