There is nothing wrong with being in love with food and labelling yourself as a diehard foodie as long as you understand the foods that you consume on a daily basis. Most people make the mistake of consuming excess amounts of food without having a clue about what’s going into their tummy. Do not be like those people. Be an informed and educated eater. In that way, you can enjoy your delicious meals without having to worry about suffering from severe health complications or annoying digestive issues. For example, if you really love sweet potatoes, should you not be well informed about how many calories are there in this vegetable? Should you not have more information on the nutritional benefits of sweet potatoes and the possible ill effects of consuming them? If you have been struggling to dig up information, you have come to right place. Read on to learn about the calorie count in sweet potatoes and more!
Basic Information on Sweet Potatoes
Contrary to popular belief, there is no one single variety of sweet potatoes. They come in different shapes, sizes, textures and even colour. For instance, sweet potatoes are known for their bright orange flesh, but some sweet potatoes actually have a white flesh similar to regular potatoes. In certain places of the world, sweet potatoes are referred to as yam. The ideal region for cultivating and harvesting sweet potatoes is the southern regions of North America. Some of the common varieties of sweet potatoes include Covington, O Henry and the Japanese (No, they were not originated in Japan. You can thank people from Central and South America for the discovery of potatoes).
When you are trying to calculate the calories in a sweet potato, it is advisable that you take into account the amount of calories present in the butter or the margarine that you add to the potatoes. The calorie content of sweet potatoes is actually not as high as you may have expected it to be. It is certainly lower than that of regular white potatoes. Whereas regular white potatoes measure in the 170s, sweet potatoes have a calorie content of somewhere in between 103 to 111 depending on the variety of sweet potatoes that you are dealing with. Even though sweet potatoes are generally low calorie food items, the addition of the butter and the margarine takes the calorie content up by some distance. In fact, smearing butter or margarine in sweet potatoes can raise the calorie content to a level that is comparable with that of high calorie sugar. When you are serving sweet potatoes alone in their natural state, they are incredibly nutritious and wonderfully healthy.
● A single cup serving of baked potatoes (which is around 200 grams) contains about 180 calories
● A medium sized sweet potato that has been served raw (in the form of raw chopped fries) can raise your calorie intake by 103 calories. The weight of a medium sized sweet potato is usually no more than 114 grams.
● If you are looking to have a smaller sized sweet potato, then you are only going to derive 54 calories from the 60 grams of flesh and skin of the sweet potato.
Nutritional Facts and Health Benefits
Not only are sweet potatoes “not unhealthy”, they actually have plenty of health benefits on offer. Information on their nutritional content will help you understand why sweet potatoes are a great addition to your daily balanced and healthy diet. Sweet potatoes contain plenty of Vitamin B-6. They are also enriched with Vitamin C and Vitamin D. Furthermore, you are likely to find decent quantities of essential minerals such as magnesium and potassium in sweet potatoes. The moment you add butter or margarine to sweet potatoes, it becomes quite unhealthy. Hence, you are advised to avoid using butter in your sweet potato dishes unless it is an absolute necessity. Did you know that the natural fat content in sweet potatoes is only 1 gm? When you add butter to the sweet potatoes, the fat content rises drastically to 140. There is no need for you to consume so much fat at one go. Limit your use of butter to live a healthier life.
As far as the health benefits are concerned, the presence of the Vitamin B-6 in sweet potatoes gives you the benefit of a lowered risk of degenerative diseases as well as heart disease. The Vitamin C in sweet potatoes protects you from specific types of cancer. Vitamin C is also vital in providing protection against certain types of germs that lead to cold and influenza. Eating sweet potatoes on a regular basis will prevent you from giving in to fatigue and should enhance your overall immune system. You are also likely to develop health skin when you consume sweet potatoes at least twice a week.