What are the health benefits of sweet potato? Sweet potatoes are yet another ingredient that regularly sneak their way into my diet, and into many of my recipes. Im not a fan of regular potatoes because they are super high GI starch bombs basically! Sweet potatoes on the other hand have a much lower glycaemic impact. Moving towards a lower glycaemic diet overall can have profound effects upon many aspects of health, especially for issues such as insulin resistance, stubborn abdominal weight gain, and cardiovascular disease.
Immune system health
Sweet potatoes do seem to have an interesting effect upon the immune system. This is because they contain a unique type of storage protein used by the plant as a food source during various stages of its growth cycle. Research carried out in China showed that this protein may stimulate the production of white blood cells, which may help to support immunity. Granted, the research is in its infancy, but this could lead to some very interesting future research.
Sweet potatoes are one of my real go to foods for skin health. They are very rich in beta carotene, the substance that gives them their bright orange colour. This can offer significant antioxidant protection for the skin, and some anti-inflammatory action, too. This is because it is a fat soluble antioxidant. This basically means that once absorbed, this substance won’t stay in circulation for very long, because by its very nature it wants to migrate out into a fatty tissue – such as the subcutaneous layer of the skin. Within the subcutaneous layer, there are many important structures such as collagen and elastin, and the pilosebaceous unit. When we consume a decent amount of fat soluble antioxidants, they will begin to accumulate in the subcutaneous layer and offer localised protection to these important structures.