When you think of sweet potatoes, you probably think of orange sweet potatoes; however, you can also find purple sweet potatoes, which are especially delicious. Purple sweet potatoes or Okinawan sweet potatoes are a staple food in Okinawa, Japan, and for good reasons. They are healthy, taste great, and can be used in many different ways. You can find purple sweet potatoes in specialty grocery stores during the winter months, and, if you happen to come across them, you should definitely try them because there are many reasons to eat purple sweet potatoes.
1. They’re Unusual
Unless you live in Japan or Hawaii, you probably don’t come across purple sweet potatoes that often. Because they are unusual for most people, purple sweet potatoes are a food you can eat to add variety to your diet. Instead of having boring white mashed potatoes with your dinner, try having mashed purple sweet potatoes. Your plate will certainly be more colorful, and you will have something new and unusual to try.
While purple sweet potatoes are a bit of a novelty, you may find yourself buying them whenever you can after you try them. They are so delicious! They have a wonderful sweet flavor that is similar to orange sweet potatoes, but even better. In fact, they are so good; you just might find yourself eating more than one serving!
3. Low Calorie
If you do end up eating a lot of purple sweet potatoes, don’t despair. They do not have many calories. One medium purple sweet potato has only 250 calories. Because they are so low in calories, purple sweet potatoes are a great food to eat when you are trying to lose weight. They taste wonderful, and you don’t have to feel guilty about eating them.
4. High in Fiber
Another reason to eat purple sweet potatoes is for their high fiber content. One medium purple sweet potato has six grams of fiber. Including plenty of fiber in your diet is important because it helps stabilize your blood sugar, and it keeps your digestive system healthy. Also, eating plenty of fiber will help you stay full for a longer period of time, which can be useful if you are trying to lose weight.
5. Very Nutritious
Not only are purple sweet potatoes loaded with fiber, they also have a lot of vitamins and minerals. One medium purple sweet potato has ample amounts of vitamin A, 812 milligrams of potassium, and some calcium. Purple sweet potatoes also have copper, B-vitamins, and iron, all of which are needed for a healthy, well-balanced diet.
Purple sweet potatoes get their purple color from the antioxidant, anthocyanin. Anthocyanin is an important antioxidant that helps protect against cardiovascular disease and cancer. Obviously, anthocyanin is a powerful antioxidant, and purple sweet potatoes happen to be especially high in it. In fact, purple sweet potatoes have 150 times more antioxidants than blueberries!
One of the great things about purple sweet potatoes is you can use them in many different ways. You can simply and mash them, or you can roast them and add them to salads. You can even use purple sweet potatoes in desserts. They are after all sweet!
Next time you run across purple sweet potatoes at the grocery store, be sure you get some to try. You won’t be disappointed. They are a beautiful color, and they have a fantastic flavor! Have you ever tried purple sweet potatoes?