There are many people who associate sweet potatoes with Thanksgiving. But, truth is that the sweet potato is a tasty and healthy vegetable that we should include in our meals more often. There are many ways in which people can enjoy sweet potatoes and one of them is baked sweet potato combo. Now let’s see what makes baked sweet potato so special.
Health Benefits of Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes are starchy, but they are classified as “antidiabetic” foods. In animal studies, sweet potatoes actually helped stabilize blood sugar levels and improve the response to insulin. They are an excellent source of carotenoid antioxidants. The darker the variety of the sweet potato, the higher the concentration of carotenes. They also contain a unique protein storage in the root that seems to have a potent antioxidant quality- in one study these proteins had 1/3 of the antioxidant activity of glutathione. Glutathione is our body’s most important internal antioxidant, so that is quite impressive.
Sweet potatoes are a good source of vitamin B6 and thiamin, which support a healthy the nervous system, and they have a decent amount of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps fight the flu, colds, and similar respiratory issues and accelerates the process of healing, so along with the antioxidant proteins, sweet potato ranks well as an antioxidant food. Sweet potatoes also come with manganese, copper, biotin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B2, and dietary fiber.
Difference between Sweet Potatoes and Yams
Most people in the US make the same mistake – they call sweet potatoes yams. Truth is that true yams are much different than sweet potatoes. Yams are native to Asia and Africa while the sweet potato comes from America. Yams have completely different nutritional value compared to sweet potatoes. In addition, sweet potatoes are moist and sweet and yams are dry and starchy. In addition, yams have hair and come in brown color while sweet potatoes have smooth orange, yellow, purple and red skins. But, even if you don’t know these differences, the “yam” you bought in your local store is most likely a sweet potato.
Health Benefits of Turnips or Rutabagas
Turnips are low-calorie veggies that bring many different health benefits. For example, they are a great source of vitamin C and this powerful antioxidant can help people synthesize collagen when needed easily. Vitamin C also eliminates free radicals and keeps us safe from inflammation and cancer. In addition, turnips contain vitamin A, vitamin K, lutein, xanthine, carotenoid, calcium, manganese and few other nutrients. Many people confuse them with rutabagas, but rutabagas are a different root vegetable. Rutabagas contain a significant amount of different nutrients including vitamin K, E, B and C, zinc, calcium, iron, potassium, manganese, and phosphorus. They are praised for their antioxidant effects and the support they provide to the immune, digestive and cardiovascular system.
Enjoy this delicious baked sweet potato medley recipe! Looking for more recipes with functional nutrition benefits? Follow me on Pinterest!
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