It may be the scourge of low-carb dieters but the humble spud could be the next big thing in superfoods, according to scientists. A new study has found that eating a portion of potato twice a day can lower blood pressure.
And the best news? Your daily potato intake won’t make you put on weight.
Scientists suggest that microwaving your potatoes with no butter or oil is the healthiest option, as this preserves most of their natural goodness. But baked and boiled potatoes, including mash, will also do the trick. It is also recommended that they are cooked in their skins as this is where many of the blood pressure-lowering chemicals are to be found.
The study tested 18 men and women, who were asked to eat six to eight golf ball-sized potatoes with their lunch and dinner, as part of their normal diet. The majority of the participants were overweight or obese and on pills to lower blood pressure.
After a month on the diet their blood pressure readings dropped significantly, suggesting the potatoes were powerful enough to take over when the tablets could not do any more. What's more, none of the volunteers put on any weight.
Researcher Jo Vinson, from Scranton University in Pannsylvania, said: “Mention ‘potato’ and people think ‘fattening high carbs, empty calories’. We hope our research helps to remake the potato’s popular nutritional image.”