||Last Updated: Apr 20, 2011 - 9:38:09 AM
The preparation of a potato can have a big impact on its mineral
content, Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists report in a new
study of this popular vegetable.
Baked, roasted, boiled or fried, the potato is America's favorite
vegetable. Every year, the average American eats about 130 pounds of
potatoes, which are loaded with vitamins and minerals.
Cubing potatoes can reduce boiling time, but it also reduces mineral
content by as much as 75 percent. That's one conclusion from a study by
research geneticist Shelley Jansky and plant physiologist Paul Bethke
at the ARS Vegetable Crops Research Unit in Madison, Wis.
Jansky and Bethke subjected six potato varieties to various methods of
preparation, and then ran a mineral analysis for potassium and 10 other
minerals. They found that cubing or shredding potatoes prior to boiling
resulted in significant potassium reductions.
This could be a good cooking strategy for potato fans hoping to reduce
potassium intake, such as dialysis patients. But individuals who want
to get the highest nutritional bang for their buck would be better off
boiling their potatoes whole.
Jansky and Bethke also examined the effects of leaching the
potatoes--letting them soak in water overnight. Their results showed
that leaching had no significant impact on potassium reduction, in
contrast with conventional wisdom.
The results of this research could help guide the cooking decisions of
people who want to reduce the mineral content of their potatoes, as
well as those people who want to maximize their nutritional benefits.
ARS is a scientific research agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
ARS News Service
Agricultural Research Service, USDA
Laura McGinnis, (301) 504-1654, firstname.lastname@example.org
June 24, 2008
--View this report online, plus photos and related stories, at www.ars.usda.gov/is/pr
© 2004-2008 by foodconsumer.org unless otherwise specified
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