Friday, October 21, 2011

Are Potatoes and Other by Robert D. Franklin

The fitness industry certainly agrees that white bread and refined white sugar are two of the worst things we can put in our bodies. But I highly disagree with avoiding any and all "white carbohydrates".

"White Foods" aren't necessarily always the enemy.

It's true that colorful foods are great, but it is a big mistake to specifically avoid white foods all together. There are plenty of white foods that have specific nutrients that are difficult to find elsewhere. Here are a few examples...

Onions & Garlic

These are both white and they are chock full of protective phytonutrients, vitamins, and trace minerals that aren't easy to find elsewhere in a normal diet... such nutrients as allicin, quercetin (an important flavonoid), chromium, and other unique anti-inflammatory nutrients.


Yet another example of something white that is great for you. Loaded with vitamin C, fiber, minerals, and special compounds like glucosinolates and thiocyanates, these are specifically abundant in cruciferous vegetables such as broccoli, cauliflower, and cabbage. A side tidbit fact is that some of the compounds in cruciferous vegetables help combat other estrogenic compounds in our food supply and environment and can help prevent excess belly fat. So, go ahead and load up on cauliflower!


Surprisingly, white mushrooms have high levels of unique nutrients and antioxidants that not many people realize. White mushrooms are high in a couple types of antioxidants called polyphenols and ergothioneine.


Now that also leads us to another example - white potatoes (which by the way, can also be found in red, yellow, purple varieties, etc). Many health professionals claim that potatoes are a bad carbohydrate because they are thought to have a high glycemic index. First of all, if you've read my Truth about Six Pack Abs book, then you understand that glycemic index is not necessarily the most important factor in choosing your carbohydrates.

While a generalization can be made that most low glycemic index carbohydrate choices will help you lose body fat easier than high glycemic index choices, it is not all that it's cracked up to be. There are many other factors that determine how your body will react-to and process the carbohydrates you ingest, such as glycemic load and also how you combine the high GI food with other foods.

Watermelon is also a great source of vitamins, minerals, and lycopene. There's just no reason to avoid it simply because it has a high GI. The main idea is candy bars, cupcakes, and donuts make you fat, NOT watermelons, carrots or potatoes.

Food combinations are important in how your body processes the carbohydrates and the associated blood sugar and insulin response you receive. Let's say, if you mix a high glycemic index carbohydrate with an extra source of fiber, healthy fats, or even certain proteins, many times the blood sugar and glycemic response will be slowed down considerably by the way you combined the food.

Please don't ruin potatoes by deep frying them into french fries either! French fries are one of the most evil things ever invented for your health, but only because we kill them by soaking them in the hydrogenated oils typically used.

Keep in mind that potatoes contain so many vitamins and minerals that the list is way too long. By the way, when you eat the skins, you get a decent shot of fiber too.