Sweet potatoes have gained massive popularity over the past few years for a number of reasons. Not only are they much better for you than regular potatoes and contain much more types of vitamins and minerals but they have also begun to replace regular potatoes in our diet in many regular recopies. Many dinners now offer sweet potato fries, sweet potato mash and baked sweet potato on their menus. A slightly newer entry to these venues is sweet potato skins. That being said, even though many different restaurants now offer them as standard we still have many people asking us “can you eat potato skin?”
In this article we are going to be going over the nutrition offered by sweet potato skins, the benefit to your body if you choose to consume them and a number of other minor questions we are asked on the subject. Thankfully, the answer is yes! I personally love the taste of sweet potato and would choose one over a regular potato at every possible chance I get. In particular, my favourite sweet potato dish is sweet potato skins! They are the perfect snack, simply prepare them and add your favourite choice of dip. I particularly enjoy them with salsa.
Is Sweet Potato Skin Edible?
A newer trend in cooking and preparing sweet potato skins is to scrape out the inner orange flesh of the sweet potato and replace it with a different filling or mash the inner flesh, add a few more choice ingredients and refill the skin.
My Loaded Sweet Potato Skin Recipe!
This is an extremely simple recipe and it tastes great! Simply cut the sweet potato in half and scoop the inner flesh of the sweet potato out leaving the skin and around half a centimetre of the flesh to harden when you bake the skins later. Place all of the inner flesh in a bowl and mash it, once mashed add a little milk and mix it in. Next, add your favourite chilli’s, peppers and a crushed garlic clove. I personally use Jalapeño’s and regular bell peppers.
Once you have mixed everything together refill the skins. Place your favourite meltable cheese on top, I personally use mozzarella and then add bacon scraps on top of the cheese. I then place my loaded sweet potato skins in the oven and bake them.
So What Is The Sweet Potato Skin Nutrition Values?
The skins of sweet potato are an excellent source of dietary fibre, the skin of a single sweet potato offers more fibre than a while bowling of oatmeal at around five grammes of fibre. To put things in perspective it is advised that men consume around 38 grammes of fibre each day and women consume 25 grams of fibre.
As with most orange fruit and vegetables sweet potato and their skins are an excellent source of beta-carotene. A single baked skin retained just over your entire recommended daily intake of beta carotene helping you keep your levels of this powerful anti oxidant topped up. Your body then transforms the beta carotene into Vitamin A internally.
The skins of this delicious vegetable are also jam packed with various essential vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin C, Vitamin E and Folate. A sweet potato skin contains around ten percent of your daily intake of vitamin C, around 13% vitamin E.
The skins also contain around 7% of your daily required potassium, although this may not sound like much it is one of the highest concentrations available from any natural source, they also contain a moderate amount of iron along with various other trace amounts of essential vitamins and minerals such as manganese, copper, biotin, potassium and phosphorus.
Due to the high amount of fibre found in sweet potato skins they offer you the health benefits of healthy bowel movements, lower cholesterol, as well as assisting the body in regulating blood sugar.
As your body transforms the beta carotene found in the sweet potato skins into Vitamin A it is then distributed around the body. Vitamin A is essential for your eyes and assists with repairs and fighting off infection of the eye ball. Vitamin A also helps strengthen your bodies natural immune system and some research have been published to suggest it also has cancer killing properties.
The vitamin C and vitamin E found in the skins of the sweet potato are both powerful anti oxidants that help keep your immune system strong and can help your body fight off ailments such as colds. Again research has suggested they have cancer killing capabilities but solid research is going.
The consumption of sweet potato skins also have various anti-inflammatory properties gained naturally from the trace vitamins and minerals found within them, this can help with a number of regular bodily functions and assist the brain with essential daily functioning.
How To Pick Your Sweet Potatoes In The Store.
When in the store ensure your sweet potatoes are free from cracks, soft spots and bruises. If possible avoid any that have been stored close to refrigerated machines as cold temperatures rapidly alter the taste of the potato in a negative way.
Once purchased be sure to store in a dark, well-ventilated are that maintains a cool yet steady temperature through out the day. Do not place in a refrigerator.
A Warning To Anyone With Kidney Stones
Sweet potatoes are classed as having a high amount of oxalates within them. Although still minimal it is worth noting that if too many oxalates are consumed by anyone suffering from kidney stones then there is a moderate chance that they may begin to crystallise and make any problems with your kidney stones worse.
Research has suggested that this is an extremely small risk and anyone with a healthy digestive track should not experience any problems at all as a healthy gut is usually able to prevent any negative effects from occurring.
Images used on a creative commons licence – https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/
Image One by shelnew19 – https://www.flickr.com/photos/shelnew19/7773829850/
Image Two by stephanie – https://www.flickr.com/photos/sbogdanich/14123157945/
Image Three by Kae Yen Yong – https://www.flickr.com/photos/fizzedi/6088457328/