Protein is essential for building lean muscle mass, preventing muscle loss, and speeding up recovery after strenuous exercise. Therefore, your diet must include plenty of protein-rich foods, such as meat, eggs, or beans.
Complete proteins are foods that contain all nine essential amino acids that your body doesn't produce. Animal-based foods like meat, dairy products, and eggs are complete proteins, but some vegetarian foods are also.
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Are Potatoes a Complete Protein?
Potatoes aren't a complete protein, as they lack some of the nine essential amino acids.
However, they're highly nutritious and an excellent source of vitamins C and B6, fiber, and potassium.
Why Aren't Potatoes a Complete Protein?
Potatoes are low in three essential amino acids: tryptophan, methionine, and histidine.
To get enough of these amino acids from potatoes, you’d have to eat around ten a day.
Can You Make Potatoes a Complete Protein?
Are Sweet Potatoes a Complete Protein?
Like potatoes, sweet potatoes are an incomplete protein.
Sweet potatoes also pair well with beans, such as kidney beans or black beans.
Other complete protein pairings with sweet potatoes include carrots, pumpkin seeds, and cremini mushrooms.
Are Potato Chips a Complete Protein?
Potato chips aren’t a complete protein and are much higher in calories, fat, and sodium.
Are Potatoes Good for You?
Potatoes are nutritious, especially when baked with the skin on, as most nutrients are near the surface.
They're a great source of fiber, with a medium-sized potato containing 3.8 grams, around 15% of the recommended daily intake.
Fiber keeps you feeling full longer after eating and lowers bad cholesterol levels.
One medium potato also contains 929 mg of potassium, which helps offset the negative effects of sodium on your blood pressure, lowering your risk of heart attack and stroke. Potassium is an electrolyte that maintains fluid balance in your body, preventing dehydration.
Potatoes contain up to 28% of the recommended daily intake of vitamin C, which supports tissue growth, development, and repair. It also boosts your immune system, aids iron absorption, and improves wound healing.
Potatoes are high in magnesium, which helps regulate blood sugar levels and supports heart health.
They also contain powerful antioxidants, which flush free radicals from your body, preventing cellular oxidative damage; this reduces your risk of developing heart disease, diabetes, and cancer.
Studies show that the antioxidants in potatoes may suppress the growth of liver and colon tumors.
Although they're not a complete protein, potatoes are highly nutritious, so they're a fantastic addition to a healthy, balanced diet.