This is a great side dish or on its own and is a great option for vegetarians or anyone looking for a hearty healthy meal. This meal is loaded with antioxidants, fiber vitamins and minerals that support blood sugar balance, inflammation and mood.
Sweet potatoes, often associated with holiday meals and comfort food, are not only delicious but also packed with a plethora of health benefits. These vibrant orange tubers are a nutritional powerhouse, offering a wide range of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Sweet potatoes are particularly high in vitamin A, which is essential for healthy vision, immune function, and skin health. One medium-sized sweet potato can provide more than 400% of your daily recommended intake of vitamin A. This is very helpful when entering flu season!
Additionally, sweet potatoes are a good source of vitamin C, potassium, and manganese, as well as potassium which can help regulate blood pressure, while manganese supports bone health and wound healing.
Fiber is crucial for digestive health and can help prevent constipation, promote regular bowel movements, reduce the risk of colon cancer, lower cholesterol and support blood sugar balance. Sweet potatoes are an excellent source of dietary fiber, with both soluble and insoluble fiber content. Consuming foods high in fiber can also aid in weight management by promoting a feeling of fullness and reducing overall calorie intake. We often don’t get enough fiber in our diet so this is a great fiber boost to your daily intake.
Sweet potatoes are packed with antioxidants, including beta-carotene, anthocyanins, and other compounds that can help combat oxidative stress and reduce the risk of chronic diseases. Research shows that individuals that followed a diet rich in anthocyanidins have been shown to have a 39% lower risk of developing depression symptoms (1).
Contrary to common misconceptions, sweet potatoes have a relatively low glycemic index (GI), which means they do not cause rapid spikes in blood sugar levels when consumed in moderation. In fact, the fiber and complex carbohydrates in sweet potatoes can help stabilize blood sugar levels, making them a suitable option for individuals with diabetes or those looking to maintain balanced energy throughout the day.
Don’t forget Chickpeas… Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, have been a dietary staple in various cuisines for thousands of years. These tiny legumes pack a big nutritional punch, making them a versatile and valuable addition to any diet. One of the standout features of chickpeas is their high protein content, making them an excellent choice for vegetarians, vegans, and anyone looking to increase their plant-based protein intake. Just one cup of cooked chickpeas provides around 15 grams of protein, making them a valuable addition to salads, soups, and curries.
Like sweet potatoes chickpeas are an excellent source of dietary fiber, and the combination of protein and fiber helps increase feelings of fullness and reduces overall calorie intake. This can be particularly helpful for those looking to control their appetite and maintain a healthy weight.
Chickpeas also have a low glycemic index (GI), which means they have a minimal impact on blood sugar levels. Foods with a low GI are digested and absorbed more slowly, leading to gradual increases in blood sugar rather than sharp spikes. This property makes chickpeas an excellent choice for individuals with diabetes or those aiming to help provide more balanced mood and energy levels throughout the day.
Chickpeas are a good source of folate, iron, phosphorus, and manganese. Folate is crucial for cell division and the formation of DNA, making it especially important for pregnant women. Iron is essential for preventing anemia, while phosphorus and manganese play roles in bone health and wound healing, respectively.
So what are you waiting for!! This meal is pleasing on the eyes and the taste buds and provides you with an important balance of key nutrients, fiber, protein and antioxidants.
Loving Loaded Potato Recipes
- 4 small sweet potatoes
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 cups chick peas, cooked, from the can
- 1 orange bell pepper diced
- 1 cup of chopped broccoli
- 1 tbsp chilli powder
- 1 tbsp turmeric
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp sea salt
- 2 cups of spinach
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat over to 375ºF (190ºC). Place sweet potatoes on a baking sheet and bake for approximately 20-30 mins, until fork tender.
- While sweet potatoes are baking, warm olive oil in a small pan. Add chickpeas, peppers, onion, chili powder, turmeric, garlic and sea salt. Stir well to combine.
- When sweet potatoes are ready, remove from oven. Slice each most of the way through. Divide sweet potatoes between serving plates.
- Top with warm chickpeas mixture, fresh spinach, broccoli. Enjoy!