Featured Vegetable: Sweet Potatoes
The term sweet potatoes, for many, bring to mind buttery southern comfort food or Thanksgiving plates heaped with candied delicacies or marshmallow casseroles. Prepared a little differently these nutrition powerhouses can be enjoyed year round as part of a healthy diet.
For a mere 100 calories, a medium sweet potato provides more than 20% of the Daily Value for Vitamins A & C and is a good source of fiber and potassium, which are nutrients lacking in the American diet. The health benefits don't stop there. Sweet potatoes are available in a surprising array of colors from the familiar orange to those with white and purple flesh. The vibrant colors come from pigments with important antioxidant properties. Anthocyanin pigments such as peonidins and cyanidins provide the color for the purple variety while the orange variety gets its color from beta carotene.
Sweet potatoes store well (up to 10 days in a cool dry place) and are versatile, so you can keep them on hand to enjoy in a variety of ways. Enjoy sweet potatoes baked, mashed, roasted, grilled or microwaved to maintain their flavor and nutrition. Complement your dish with fruits such as apples, peaches or pineapple and seasonings such as cinnamon, or nutmeg for a twist on the traditional. Want some more ideas? Check out these tasty recipes from Campbell's Kitchen®
Visit The Produce for Better Health Foundation website for more ways to enjoy this delicious vegetable. Don't like to cook? Try drinking your sweet potatoes! V8 V-Fusion® juice contains the juice of sweet potatoes and other fruits and vegetables in a delicious and refreshing beverage.
The 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend eating more red and orange fruits and vegetables, up to 5 ½ cups weekly (based on a 2,000 calorie per day diet) so stock up and enjoy!