Friday, March 19, 2010

Sweet Potatoes: A Month of Monsters

We hadn't altogether planned to begin growing sweet potatoes but when a store bought specimen began to sprout in the potato cupboard we decided to plant him out. Well he grew a nice crop alright including this monster that burst his own skin he was growing so fast. We harvested a dozen all up from our pioneer so very happy all round.

Our South American friends are packed full of goodness and taste great as well. "Besides simple starches, sweet potatoes are rich in complex carbohydrates, dietary fiber, beta carotene (a vitamin A equivalent nutrient), vitamin C, and vitamin B6. Pink and yellow varieties are high in carotene, the precursor of vitamin A.

In 1992, the Center for Science in the Public Interest compared the nutritional value of sweet potatoes to other vegetables. Considering fibre content, complex carbohydrates, protein, vitamins A and C, iron, and calcium, the sweet potato ranked highest in nutritional value. According to these criteria, sweet potatoes earned 184 points, 100 points over the next on the list, the common potato.(NCSPC)

Sweet potato varieties with dark orange flesh have more beta carotene than those with light coloured flesh, and their increased cultivation is being encouraged in Africa, where vitamin A deficiency is a serious health problem. Despite the name "sweet", it may be a beneficial food for diabetics, as preliminary studies on animals have revealed that it helps to stabilize blood sugar levels and to lower insulin resistance. Some Americans, including television personality Oprah Winfrey, are advocating increased consumption of sweet potatoes both for their health benefits and because of their importance in traditional Southern cuisine.

The peptic substance (0.78 percent total, 0.43 percent soluble) present in fresh tubers contains uronic acid (60 percent) and methoxyl (4 to 5 percent). Other constituents include phytin (1.05 percent), two monoaminophosphatides (probably lecithin and cephalin), organic acids (oxalic acid), phytosterolin, phytosterol, resins, tannins, and colouring matter. (Hug et al., 1983)." - Wikipedia


  1. Hello! Love reading your blog. Found it by doing a image search for apple trees, believe it or not. I look forward to keeping up with your family and all your growing endeavors in the future!

    Natalie from Virginia

  2. Welcome Aboard Natalie!

    Our Apple Trees are still rather sorry looking specimens at the moment. lol

    We are glad you are enjoying our blog :D