Updated: Aug 1, 2021
Man, did that get a bad rap. Our potato who has brought civilization through hard times and good. It is filled with that dreaded word "carbs"..... Gasp!!! So we all ran away, abandonded our simple hard working potato and left him in the dirt (pun intended).
Well that little potato that everyone secretly loves but aren't allowed to eat, is making a comeback, both as a medicinal food and as a meal. Don't run away yet, let me explain.
There are "carbs" and there are "carbs". They are unequal and shouldn't be mixed up. Processed foods are bad, carbs and all. This includes snacks, candy, processed sugar, chips, breads etc. Key word: processed.
However the carbs inside of natural foods are there for us to eat and get energy to keep up with our busy lives. They come in a perfect package inside of these natural fruits and vegetables. The carbohydrates come together with lots of vitamins, minerals, trace minerals, antioxidants etc. These are all important to our body so it can function normally with less strain, more nutrients and information. Yes, real food is information for our body.
Our body takes real carbohydrates, such as those in potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, pumpkin, zucchini, mushrooms, fruit and whole (gluten free) grains, pulses and legumes, and uses them for energy and function. Our brain and our liver especially need these to function properly , for detox and energy..
Our cells open for sugar (glucose) to allow nutrients in. Hospital staff use sugar to open cells during cancer treatments to allow chemotherapy drugs to get into cancer cells to kill them. When we take supplements, herbs, vitamins etc with something sweet such as honey, orange juice or fruit, it drives the supplement into the cells where it's needed.
When we eat potatoes, sweet potatoes or other starchy vegetables together with other vegetables, herbs, sprouts, etc, the nutrients from those other foods can reach the cells where they are used because the carbohydrates from the potatoes allows the cells to open up to receive and utilize the good nutrients.
Potatoes themselves are a healing food. They are gentle on the digestive system if eaten correctly, they have nutrients, they help restore glucose in the brain , they are anti viral, anti bacterial, they help to stabilize the adrenals, the thyroid, the nervous system, the pancreas, blood sugar levels, immune system, calming inflammation, and they help to build up stores of glucose in the body so that when we need it, the body can pull from there to help us get through certain situations or deficiencies.
Potatoes got the blame when they were accused of causing people to gain weight. However, let's look at how potatoes are normally eaten: fried or smothered in butter or sour cream.... Hmmm. Could it be the fat that is actually the culprit here ?
Fat is what makes us fat. When you mix fat with nutrients, sugar or healthy foods, it grabs on to the nutrients, coats them and they are unable to get to the cells because of this fatty lipid surrounding it. So they float around the blood stream unable to be used by the body. The glucose cannot be delivered to the cells which results in insulin resistance leading to diabetes. The body will excrete what it can, but another fat filled meal, another fat filled snack, eventually the liver can't store it because it's full, so it floats around in the blood stream, some will get stored in pockets (we begin putting on weight) the rest will clog the blood making the blood thick and hard to pump.
The potato didn't do that. The sour cream on the potato did that. If we steam potatoes, bake them, add them to vegetable stews, mash them with garlic and onions, eat them together with greens, vegetables, sprouts, salads, etc we are eating them correctly without the heavy fat load. They help us lose weight, fight disease, ease anxiety, clear brain fog, feel satisfied and energize us throughout the day .
The carbohydrates from these starchy vegetables and fruits give us energy, but they also give energy to our organs who need it to continue to function normally. So we are sustaining ourselves on many levels.
You know that feeling right around 3 or 4 in the afternoon when your energy drops and you feel like you need a cup of coffee to keep you going? When you engage with healthy carbohydrates without the fat, you don't feel tired anymore. What a concept!!! Your energy levels stay balanced and even all throughout the day.
We feel satisfied with the correct carbohydrates. Our cells need it, our brain needs it, our liver needs it, our muscles need it. If we don't get it, we crave it, usually this results in junk food cravings. Our bodies are asking for the correct sugars, but it translates into thinking we want sugary snacks or unhealthy foods filled with sugar and oil (among other things). However if you are satisfying your body correctly, you will see these cravings become less and less until they eventually go away. You will begin to lose weight and feel energized as well.
I know this is a hard concept to grasp because we've been so conditioned to believe that "carbs" are bad, and yes the processed ones definitely are. But try to open your mind just a little to imagine the common sense of this, rather than the faddy (read fatty) diets that tell us to eat fat all day long.
The potato brought Ireland out of the dark ages. It sustained them when there was nothing else. It has nourished all of South America since the beginning of time. It has provided sustenance to Russian countries in the dead of winter when all else was frozen. It was brought to the western world to fill a void in their diets, yet it was sadly robbed of it's nobility and it's nutritional profile and erased from our memories for it's contribution to our health and well being.
There has been a lot of money spent to keep us sick. The marketing, the sponsors, the false information being disseminated etc. Keeping our diets simple and nutrient dense isn't hard or expensive. They don't want you to know that. Potatoes, sweet potatoes, squash, zucchini, pumpkin are easy to grow, which keeps the cost low. In the ground, in buckets, on balconies or rooftops, whatever your situation, these can be grown without too much fuss. (same goes for any garden veggies). Squash, zucchini and pumpkin can be grown right from the seeds inside them, potatoes and sweet potatoes can be grown from sprouting potatoes or sweet potatoes. Just bury them in the ground (or bucket) and water them...
To incorporate them into your diet, the possibilities are many: steamed, baked, (or both), mashed, made into flat bread, grated, pancakes/waffles, in place of sandwich bread , roasted, stewed, spiced, added to salads, soups, sandwiches, used as a "cheese sauce" or dipping sauce, oil-free stir fry and more. I get most of my recipes and ideas from the websites below. Otherwise , I keep it simple and just enjoy them steamed and eaten with other vegetables.
Anthony William (the celery juice guy) has helped to raise interest in the potato once again, providing recipes and information on it's role in healing. Please check out his books and website for more in depth information. medicalmedium.com Also Bobby and Cyrus with Mastering Diabetes have a lot to say the health benefits of the humble potato, good carbohydrates and how to eat them correctly. masteringdiabetes.org