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The Unique Type of Starch in White Sweet Potatoes Saves You From Digestive Disorders

The Unique Type of Starch in White Sweet Potatoes Saves You From Digestive Disorders

Sweet potatoes are extremely versatile vegetables that can be incorporated numerous ways to fit your diet.

Classically, you are accustomed to the orange looking varieties, but did you know that White sweet potatoes also exist? These sweet potatoes can offer you a unique spin on a tried classic, bringing new flavours to the table along with nutritional offerings!

Some Brief History about White Sweet Potato

Even though sweet potatoes are available throughout the world today, its origins can be traced back to Central America 5000 years ago, and South America as far back as 8000 years. It was actually first documented during Christopher Columbus’ voyages to the Americas in 1492, following which it was introduced to Europe.

Today, it is effectively grown in Tropical and temperate regions, as long as there is adequate water supply.

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The Nutrients of White Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are best known for their high Vitamin A content, along with slower digesting carbohydrates and starches, which make them favorable for regulating blood sugar [1].

Below is a more detailed nutritional profile of white sweet potatoes (per 100g serving):

  • 3.3 g dietary fiber
  • 2 g protein
  • 25% DV Manganese
  • 384% DV Vitamin A (as the provitamin so toxicity is low)
  • 33% DV Vitamin C

14% DV PotassiumWhite sweet potatoes also contain a battery of accessory nutrients, ranging from B vitamins to rarer trace minerals, such as copper. More interesting, however, is the presence of a unique type of starch, known as resistant starch (more in a bit).

The Remarkable Health Benefits of White Sweet Potato

Not only does the white sweet potato make an awesome tasting meal, but it also offers numerous benefits on health, including:

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  • Blood Glucose Regulation
    Though many people associate starchy foods with increasing blood sugar, the high fiber content of white sweet potatoes slow digestion and the conversion and absorption of carbohydrates in the digestive tract.
  • Heart Health
    The heart healthy effects of white sweet potato is due to the action of B vitamins, which help to break down homocysteine, a compound that accelerates oxidative damage to blood vessels. Potassium also promotes healthy fluid balance of blood, along with regulation of heart muscle contractility.
  • Skin And Hair Health
    Exposure to UV rays from the sun promotes premature ageing to skin, and deterioration of hair. White sweet potato’s high Vitamin A content, along with decent Vitamin C, helps offset major oxidative stress resulting from sun exposure, and promote enhanced synthesis of collagen, very important in skin and connective tissue health [2].
  • Digestive Health
    Much of the insoluble fiber found in white sweet potatoes is known as resistant starch, an effective prebiotic. Prebiotics are substances that act as sustenance for the bacteria living in the gut, in this case producing butyrate in the process. Butyrate is a short chain fatty acid that some good bacteria living in the colon prefer, and has a beneficial effect on health [3]. Thus, a critical prerequisite of health is sufficient consumption of prebiotics, which in turn ensure your good probiotic bacteria function optimally to prevent digestive disorders [4].

Cautious: Side Effect of White Sweet Potato You Should Know About

White sweet potatoes, even though being sweet, have a much lower GI index than regular white potatoes and are paleo friendly. However, depending on method of preparation its GI index can spike, and possibly lead to increased blood sugar values. It is best to prepare by boiling, as this ensures it maintains a lower GI index.

In addition, skin and nail discoloration rarely occur, due to excessive storage of Vitamin A compounds in the body. This is uncommon, however, as the vitamin A in white sweet potatoes are pro-vitamins, and have a low risk of carrying negative effects.

The Proper Way to Cook White Sweet Potato

When selecting white sweet potatoes, be sure to look for small to medium sized ones. The skin should be even in color and overall shape, and be smooth to touch. This ensures ever cooking.

They can be prepared by boiling, baking or even frying, although boiling is superior for keeping its GI low.

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Delicious Recipes of White Sweet Potato

1.Sweet Potato Salad

    Perfect as a side dish or can be stored in the fridge for a quick healthy meal option

    Please click here for a detailed recipe of Sweet Potato Salad.

    2.Sweet Potato Fries (Roasted)

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      A healthier option that deep fried white potato fries, these make great sides to protein rich dishes.

      Please click here for a detailed recipe of Sweet Potato Fries.

      3.Sweet Potato Pie

        Delicious and healthy dessert option.

        Please click here for a detailed recipe of Sweet Potato Pie.

        Give Yourself a New Try!

        White sweet potato is the superior option to regular white potatoes, and is advisable for everyone. It contains good resistant fiber for your digestive wellbeing, along with ample nutrition to promote your health, so why not?

        Reference

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        Alex Eriksson

        Founder & CEO, Anabolic Health

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        Last Updated on August 15, 2018

        7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

        7 Amazing Things That Will Happen When You Do Plank Every Day

        Bodyweight exercises are gaining ground in the fitness world due to the practicality and simplicity of getting in shape using your own body weight. Planks are one form of bodyweight exercises that will never go out of fashion. Planks are one of the most effective exercises you can do. Why? Because they require a small time investment on your part, and offer the chance to achieve substantial results in a relatively short span of time.

        Video Summary

        Why is it important to train up our core strength?

        There are numerous sites and blogs which detail ways to build your core muscles or core strength. Often though, these sites neglect to explain what your core muscles actually are, and why building them is important.

        This is quite surprising, as core muscles are quite easy to explain. Your core muscles are a series of muscles in your midsection, and are used in most forms of movement. Though they aren’t housed in your arms or legs, your core muscles can help transfer force from one limb to another, or are used in addition to muscles in your arms or legs to increase their effectiveness. As such a strong core will make a big improvement on your ability to move and exercise further.

        Also they are great for helping other muscles in your midsection such as your abdominal muscles. Your abdominal muscles are important for supporting your back and spinal column, and as such are important aids in preventing injuries. However for them to be most effective you need to spend a lot of time developing your core muscles.

        In short, planking exercises can make a huge improvement in your muscles down your whole body. Making them a hugely effective exercise to perform.

        One Exercise, multiple benefits

        There are few forms of exercise as effective at building your core as planking exercises. However, planking exercises benefit far more than just your core strength.

        By holding yourself in the position for a planking exercise, you’ll notice that your biceps, neck, and shoulder muscles are also being tested and strained. This this encouraging their buildup and development. This is great news if you like to do press ups, developed shoulder muscles will have a big impact on your press up performance.

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        When planking, you are holding yourself up through your arms and biceps and so by holding a planking position, your arm muscles are being toned and developed. Making planking a great alternative exercise to other forms of bicep developing exercises.

        Moving down your midsection, successful plank exercises actually develop the muscles in your butt! These muscles tend to be ignored by a lot of exercises, so this is another great benefit of plank exercises.

        In much the same way as you develop your biceps and arm muscles, holding the planking position helps develop the muscles in your thighs too.

        What is even better is that planking exercises don’t take much time at all. In fact you should probably only spend about ten minutes max per day in the planking exercise.

        What will happen when you start doing planks every day

          1. You’ll improve core definition and performance: 

          Planks are an ideal exercise for the abdominal muscles exactly because they engage all major core muscle groups including the transverse abdominus, the rectus abdominusthe external oblique muscle, and the glutes. The importance of strengthening each muscle group cannot be underestimated either, for all of these groups serve their own purpose. If you strengthen these muscle groups you will notice:

          • Transverse abdominis: increased ability to lift heavier weights.
          • Rectus adbominis: improved sports performance, particularly with jumping. This muscle group is also responsible for giving you the renowned six pack look.
          • Oblique muscles: improved capacity for stable side-bending and waist-twisting
          • Glutes: a supported back and a strong, shapely booty.

          2. You’ll decrease your risk of injury in the back and spinal column

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            Doing planks is a type of exercise that allow you to build muscle while also making sure that you are not putting too much pressure on your spine or hips. According to the American Council on Exercise, doing planks regularly not only significantly reduces back pain but it also strengthens your muscles and ensures a strong support for your entire back, especially in the areas around your upper back.

            Check out this article if you would like to find out about how doing planks on different surfaces can impact the effectiveness of this exercise in strengthening your core.

            3. You’ll experience an increased boost to your overall metabolism

              Planking is an excellent way of challenging your entire body because doing them every day will burn more calories than other traditional abdominal exercises, such as crunches or sit-ups. The muscles you strengthen by doing this exercise on a day-to-day basis will ensure that you burn more energy even when sedentary. This is especially important if you are spending the majority of your day sitting in front of a computer. Also, making it a daily 10- to 1 minute home exercise before or after work will not only provide an enhanced metabolic rate but it will also ensure that that metabolic rate remains high all day long, (yes, even while you are asleep).

              4. You’ll significantly improve your posture

                Planking exercises have a great impact and improvement on your posture. This is great news as a strong posture brings with it a huge number of fantastic benefits .

                A good posture keeps your bones and joins in the correct alignment which means both your bones and joints will be better maintained and more healthy, but also means the overall effectiveness of your muscles will be improved.

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                A good posture will ensure your back or spine is in the correct position and so you will suffer less back pain.

                On top of everything, someone with good posture looks better, healthier, and more confident.

                5. You’ll improve overall balance

                  Have you ever felt that when you tried standing on one leg, you couldn’t stand up straight for more than a couple of seconds? It’s not because you were drunk- unless you happened to be at the time!-  but rather, it’s because your abdominal muscles weren’t strong enough to give you the balance you needed. Through improving your balance by doing side planks and planks with extensions you will boost your performance in every kind of sporting activity.

                  6. You’ll become more flexible than ever before

                    Flexibility is a key benefit of doing planks regularly, for this form of exercise expands and stretches all your posterior muscle groups – shouldersshoulder blades, and collarbone – while also stretching your hamstrings, arches of your feet, and toes. With a side plank added in to the mix, you can also work on your oblique muscles. This will provide you with further benefits when it comes to hyper-extending your toes, a movement that is crucial for supporting your body’s weight.

                    7. You’ll witness mental benefits

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                      Plank exercises have a particular effect on our nerves, making them an excellent means of improving overall mood. How? Well, they stretch out muscle groups that contribute to stress and tension in the body. Just think about it: you are sitting in your chair, at home or at work, all day long; your thigh muscles get tight, your legs get heavy due to being bent for several hours; and tension develops in your shoulders due to being forced to slump forward all day. These are all circumstances that put too stress on the muscles and nerves. The good news is that planks not only calm your brain, but they can also treat anxiety and symptoms of depression– but only if you make it part of your daily routine.

                      How to hold a plank position

                      1. Get into pushup position on the floor.
                      2. Now bend your elbows 90 degrees and rest your weight on your forearms.
                      3. Keep your torso straight and rigid and your body in a straight line from ears to toes with no sagging or bending.
                      4. Your head is relaxed and you should be looking at the floor.
                      5. Hold the position for as long as you can.
                      6. Remember to breathe. Inhale and exhale slowly and steadily.
                      7. When your form begins to suffer, pull the plug. You’re only benefiting from the plank by actually doing the plank.

                      Watch the video if you have any doubt!

                      Here is a great infographic that shows the best plank variation exercises to evenly target all abdominal muscle groups:

                        How to improve your plank time gradually

                        1. Start with the easier variation if needed. You can start with a bent-knee plank if you can’t perform a regular plank yet. If you can hold a plank for more than two minutes with ease, you can move on to these tougher variations.
                        2. Practise every day. Space your planking exercise throughout the day and do 3-4 times every day. Try to hold the position 10 seconds longer each time.
                        3. Perform other body-weight exercises at the same time. Push-up and squat will improve your core strength too.

                        Are you ready to devote 5-10 minutes of your day, every day, to stay fit, healthy and, most importantly, strong as a bull? Then jump in and make doing plank exercises a part of your life.

                        Who Should Be Cautious Doing The Plank?

                        You need to be cautious doing Planking exercises if any of these risks apply to you:

                        • Prolapse
                        • After prolapse surgery
                        • Pelvic pain conditions
                        • Weak or poorly functioning pelvic floor muscles
                        • Previous childbirth
                        • Overweight

                        Choose an alternative pelvic floor abdominal exercise or consult your doctor before performing plank regularly.

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