Nutritional Food Fact Sheet Series


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Potatoes are vegetables grown in the ground. They come in many different shapes, colours and sizes.  Eating locally grown vegetables and traditional foods helps keep our bodies healthy.

What do we know about potatoes?

Potatoes have been grown for over 7,000 years in many parts of the world. Potatoes are a popular vegetable grown by northern gardeners.  Potatoes keep well for several months so they are economical vegetables that can be stored and eaten all year long.

Many northern communities have one or more community, backyard, indoor garden or greenhouse.  What is your community growing this year?

Nutrients in potatoes

Nutrient Content per Serving

Potatoes, raw with skin on
125 mL (79 g)

Sweet Potatoes
125 mL (70 g)

Excellent Source supplies 25%  or more of a nutrient per day   Beta Carotene
Good Source supplies 15 - 24% of a nutrient per day Vitamin C  
Fair Source supplies 5 -14% of a nutrient per day

Beta Carotene


  • Reference Serving Sizes are from Canada’s Food Guide (1/2 cup = 125ml for most fruits and vegetables; weights vary).
  • The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) amounts are based on the needs of a 14 – 18 year old girl.
  • Excellent, good and fair sources of nutrients have been standardized for any type of food source.

Did you know?

  • Potatoes are a good source of vitamin C, which keeps our gums, teeth and skin healthy.
  • Potatoes are a fair source of B vitamins like niacin, thiamin, and B6. These vitamins help our bodies use the energy from foods and are important for growth, healthy skin, hair, nerves and muscles.
  • Potatoes also provide carbohydrates.  Carbohydrates are needed for energy to work and play and can be part of a healthy meal. The calories in a serving of potatoes are about the same as a slice or two of bread.  

Sweet potatoes

Sweet potatoes are one of the healthiest vegetables because of their high nutritional value.  Sweet potatoes provide the most beta carotene (vitamin A) of any vegetable. The amount is much higher than white or red potatoes.

Vitamin A is needed for healthy skin, bones and eyes. It also helps keeps our bodies healthy. Sweet potatoes are also a fair source of fibre. 

How to store, prepare and eat potatoes

  • Store potatoes in a cool, dark, and dry place.
  • The skin of potatoes is healthy and can be eaten, but needs to be washed first and any green colour removed.
  • Potatoes are best eaten baked, boiled, or steamed. Frying adds a lot of fat.

Healthy Eating

Try adding potatoes to stews, soups, or casseroles.  Use different colors of potatoes (red, white, orange) to make meals look interesting.  Mix mashed sweet and white potatoes together as topping for Shepherd’s pie for a tasty meal.  Add water to drink.

Growing food as part of a healthy lifestyle

Getting outside to garden is a great way to be active. Growing, gathering, and eating garden foods will help keep us healthy.

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