A new study conducted by researchers from the University of Washington states that potatoes provide the best nutritional value for money.
Currently, with the cost of living reaching sky high, commoners often complain about the unavailability of fresh vegetables that have high nutritional values. Addressing this complaint, a group of researchers from the University of Washington conducted a study titled "Vegetable Cost Metrics Show That Potatoes and Beans Provide Most Nutrients Per Penny," which looks into the nutritional value some vegetables provide per penny.
For the study, Dr. Adam Drewnowski and colleagues from the University of Washington used a combination of nutrient profiling methods and national food prices data to create an "affordability index" that was used to measure the nutritional level provided by 98 vegetables per penny. These vegetables were also divided into five groups including orange/red, dark green, legumes (beans and peas), starchy and "other" vegetables.
Drewnowski and colleagues found that potatoes provide the best nutritional value for money spent as well as act as an affordable source of potassium when compared to other regularly consumed vegetables. However, the researchers did state that beans have the maximum amount of potassium in them.
Researchers also found that while dark green vegetables had the highest nutrient density scores, starchy vegetables (including potatoes) and beans provided better nutritional value for money spent on them. However, potatoes topped the list as they were found to be the lowest costing vegetable that provided four key nutrients including fiber, vitamin C, potassium and magnesium.
"The ability to identify affordable, nutrient dense vegetables is important to families focused on stretching their food dollar as well as government policy makers looking to balance nutrition and economics for food programs such as the school lunch program and WIC," said lead researcher Adam Drewnowski, PhD. "And, when it comes to affordable nutrition, it's hard to beat potatoes."