A recently published study has found nine to 17 year-old girls who consumed up to one cup of potatoes daily had no increased risk of becoming overweight or developing high blood pressure, dyslipidemia, or impaired fasting glucose by the end of the study in late adolescence, an Oct. 27 news release says.
“Our results show that nutrient-rich potatoes can be part of a healthy diet in young girls during this important period of growth and development,” Lynn L. Moore with Boston University, the study’s senior author, says in the release. “There is growing evidence that overall diet quality is what really matters in the preservation of heart health.”
The release notes higher intakes of all forms of potatoes, including fried, during the pre-teen years of nine to 11 were associated with higher intakes of potassium and dietary fibre, two nutrients of public health concern, as well as vitamin C, vitamin B6 and magnesium. It was also found that Black girls in the story with the highest intakes of potatoes also consumed more fruit and non-starchy vegetables and had higher diet-quality scores.
Researchers analyzed data from nearly 2,000 girls (approximately 50 per cent Black, 50 per cent White) from the National Growth and Health Study. For girls at nine to 11 years of age, researchers analyzed data on total potato intake (white and sweet) as well as separate intakes of fried and non-fried potatoes. And for girls at nine to 17 years of age, researchers analyzed data for total potato intake (white and sweet).
The release says diet was assessed using three day diet records when the girls were nine to 10 years old, with follow-up during years two to five, seven, eight and 10. Anthropometric measures of body fat and body composition and blood pressure were measured annually. Additionally, fasting triglycerides, other lipids, and glucose were measured in later adolescence at 18-20 years of age. Repeated measures of a number of potential confounding variables were examined, including socioeconomic status, body mass index, changes in height, physical activity, television viewing, intakes of food groups and nutrients, as well as diet quality measured by the Healthy Eating Index.
The release notes investigators dp acknowledge limitations to the study, such as reliance on self-reported dietary intakes from adolescents who may have had difficulty accurately estimating portion sizes and reporting details, but parents and other caregivers were actively involved though.
The research was published in the British Journal of Nutrition.