The Irish potato is just one of thousands of varieties of potato, and it didn’t actually originate in Ireland. Native to the South American Andes region, these tubers were only called “Irish” after the Great Famine in Ireland. This period of starvation spanned from 1845-1849 and was due to a potato blight that wiped out the crops several years in a row.
But there is no such shortage now, and eating Irish potatoes can provide a lot of nutrition at an affordable price. Irish potatoes are fantastic eaten steamed, baked, or boiled. They don’t have the best texture for mashing, but fit seamlessly into lots of other recipes.
We’ve collected five more compelling reasons to make Irish potatoes part of your daily diet.
1. Balanced Mood
Sometimes white potatoes are avoided because their insides look a lot like the refined carbs we are supposed to avoid. But potatoes are not a refined starch because they have not been processed; they offer a healthy dose of fiber and tons of nutrients.
In fact, Irish potatoes are so chock-full of B vitamins that eating them can actually help to balance your mood. Vitamin B6 in particular plays a part in producing adrenaline, which helps to regulate our bodies’ response to stress. It is also linked to GABA, a chemical that supports relaxation, as well as feel-good chemicals serotonin and dopamine.
A deficit of B vitamins has actually been linked to depression, so eating Irish potatoes every day is a good way to make sure you’re getting enough to avoid mood swings, even in the midst of trying times.