Good News for Potato Protein and Carbs
Plant Protein - A new randomized controlled study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise shows that some plant-derived proteins can still induce strong anabolic responses. Exercise enthusiasts have long presumed animal protein to be superior to plant-derived options for muscle protein synthesis due to its essential amino acid profile. While many plant proteins are lower in one or more essential amino acids necessary for optimal muscle growth and repair, the potato’s amino acid profile has no apparent deficiencies.
In the recent study, researchers at Maastricht University, The Netherlands, found that consuming 30 grams of potato-derived protein concentrate following resistance exercise significantly increased muscle protein synthesis rates to levels that did not differ from the response following the ingestion of an equivalent amount of milk protein concentrate.
Quality Carbs - A new study recently published in Frontiers in Nutrition has challenged the tendency in nutrition research to separate starchy vegetables from their non-starchy counterparts and categorize them with foods delivering lower nutritional value.
Whole grains, legumes, non-starchy vegetables, and fresh fruit are typically considered to be higher quality carbohydrate foods, yet starchy vegetables, including white potatoes, are typically categorized in nutrition studies with sweets, candy and soda when researchers assess subjects’ food intake and associations with health outcomes.
Five different, previously published carbohydrate indices were used to assess 2,400 carbohydrate-containing foods for carbohydrate quality. Four of those carbohydrate quality indices (CQIs), based on carbohydrate to fiber and sugar ratios, had been developed and validated in 2021 by researchers at Tufts University. Using these indices, legumes, non-starchy and starchy vegetables, whole fruit, and whole grain foods qualified as "high quality" carbohydrate foods. The fifth index, the new carbohydrate food quality scoring system (CFQS-4) recently developed by scientists working with the Quality Carbohydrate Coalition, also incorporated potassium and sodium. According to the CFQS-4, starchy vegetables, including white potatoes placed closer to non-starchy vegetables and fruit than to candy and soda.