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Sweet potato benefits:Is there any substitute for sweet potato in India?(shakarkandi)

Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes (Ipomoea batatas) are large, starchy, sweet-tasting vegetables. They actually belong to the morning glory family.
Sweet potato

Sweet potatoes, best known as shakarkandi in India, don’t actually belong to the same tuberous family as the potato, but their starchy and creamy texture makes them an ideal substitute for regular potatoes in most dishes. Recently labelled as a superfood, sweet potato is good for the eyes, controls blood pressure, has antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.

Sweet potatoes are a great source of fibre as well an array of vitamins and minerals including iron, calcium, selenium, Vitamin B and C. The prime nutritional importance of sweet potato is that they are a good source of antioxidant beta-carotene, which is converted to vitamin A, once consumed.

Nutritional fact of  Sweet Potatoes

One medium sweet potato contains a lot of mighty micronutrients, anti-inflammatory properties, and plenty of calcium, iron, potassium, and phosphorus plus folate and vitamin C.

Serving Size: 1 medium-size sweet potato

112 calories
0g total fat
0g saturated fat
26g total carbohydrates
4g dietary fiber
5g sugar
2g protein
438 mg potassium (12% DV)
32mg magnesium (8% DV)
39mg calcium (3% DV)
0.8mg iron (3% DV)
3mg vitamin C (5% DV)
0.3mg vitamin B6 (15% DV)
18,443 IU vitamin A (386% DV)

Health benefits of sweet potato

1.Good digestion

Sweet potatoes are rich in dietary fibers and are also known for improving gut health and digestion. The high fiber content in sweet potatoes can also help in preventing constipation in both children and adults. It also contains a high amount of phytosterol that has a protective effect on the digestive system. It may help to prevent and manage duodenal and gastric ulcers.

2.Improve  Vision

Various eye diseases and blindness have been linked to a deficiency in vitamin A. This is not to say that if your diet contains sweet potatoes that you will have 20/20 vision your whole life, but this root vegetable is packed with several nutrients that have been shown to be supportive of overall vision and eye health. They also contain carotenoids alpha-carotene, beta-carotene, and lutein that have been studied to show the same thing. For the long term in aging, the vitamins C and E have also been shown to be effectual in decreasing the oxidative stress which can lead to cataracts.

3.Good for Heart disease

In a study of 61 patients with type 2 diabetes, an extract of white sweet potato skin (4 g of Caiapo) decreased cholesterol levels compared to those taking a placebo. The extract had no effect on triglycerid, however. Similarly, 4 g of Caiapo reduced total and LDL cholesterol levels (18 male type 2 diabetics)

When insulin-resistant rats were fed white-skinned sweet potatoes, triglyceride levels decreased.

This potential benefit has only been demonstrated in one relatively small human study so far. Larger and more powerful trials will be needed to confirm any actual health benefit.

4.Stomach Ulcer Cure

The Vitamin D, beta carotene, potassium and calcium content in sweet potato reduces the possibility of ulcers. So, if you are suffering from stomach ulcer, include sweet potato juice in your diet.

5.Increases Immunity

Sweet potato contains iron which maintains energy levels in the body, in turn enhancing the immunity. Besides this, sweet potato also improves the production of white and red blood cells and prevents stress. 

Best substitutes for sweet potatoes.

The best substitutes for sweet potatoes are

1. Garnet potatoes 
2. Jewel potatoes
3. Japanese Sweet Potatoes
4. Yukon gold potatoes
5. Carrots
6. Parsnips
7. Pumpkin
8. Butternut
9. Spaghetti Squash
10. Ube
11. Kabocha
12. Acorn
13. Golden Beets
14. Celery root
15. White potatoes

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