Purple-fleshed potatoes are a rich source of anthocyanins – potent plant-based antioxidant compounds. An initial laboratory study in which researchers observed that baked purple-fleshed potato extract suppressed the spread of colon cancer stem cells while increasing their deaths. The researchers then tested the effect of whole baked purple potatoes on mice with colon cancer and found similar results. Explaining that as well as anthocyanins, purple potatoes, contain resistant starch, which serves as a food for the gut bacteria, that the bacteria can covert to beneficial short-chain fatty acids such as butyric acid – a substance that regulates immune function in the gut and suppresses chronic inflammation, the investigators point out that the portion size for human consumption equates to about the same as eating one baked, large purple-fleshed potato per day.
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Diane Silverman R.Ph.
Ask The Pharmacist Group, LLC