Nutrition Science

Healthy, Sustainable Dietary Patterns

As nutrient-dense vegetables, potatoes fit into several healthy dietary patterns including the Healthy U.S.-Style eating pattern, U.S. Healthy Mediterranean-Style eating pattern, U.S. Healthy Vegetarian eating pattern and the Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet.

Potatoes provide a great-tasting, affordable nutrient package that can help people improve their overall nutrient intake and diet quality. Research shows that potatoes make significant contributions of key shortfall nutrients to diets of children, adolescents, and adults.

  • A collection of studies, supported by APRE and published in Advances in Nutrition identified a substantial body of evidence that demonstrates how the inclusion of white vegetables, such as potatoes, can increase intake of shortfall nutrients as well as help increase overall vegetable consumption (1). The open-access supplement can be viewed in entirety here.
  • An APRE-supported analysis examined the intake and nutrient contribution of total vegetables, white potatoes and French fries in Americans aged 2 and older, based on national dietary intake survey data from NHANES 2009-2010. Individuals who consumed white potatoes had significantly higher total vegetable and potassium intakes than did non-consumers. In addition, the proportion of potassium and dietary fiber contributed by white potatoes was higher than the proportion they contributed to total energy. Among white potato consumers aged 14-18 years, white potatoes provided 23 percent of dietary fiber and 20 percent of potassium but only 11 percent of total energy in the diet (2).
  • A NHANES analysis examining the contribution of potatoes to nutrient intakes among children and adolescents found that potatoes contribute 10 percent of daily intake of dietary fiber, vitamin B6, and potassium and 5 percent or more of thiamin, niacin, vitamin C, vitamin E, vitamin K, phosphorus, magnesium and copper (3).


For more information, read:


  1. White vegetables: a forgotten source of nutrients. Adv Nutr. 2013; 4: 318S-326S, 2013.
  2. Storey ML, Anderson PA. Contributions of white vegetables to nutrient intake: NHANES 2009- 2010. Adv Nutr. 2013;4:335S-44S.
  3. Freedman MR, Keast DR. White potatoes, including French fries, contribute shortfall nutrients to children’s and adolescents’ diets. Nutr Res. 2011;31:270–7.
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