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Healthy Eating and Good Nutrition Go Hand-in-Hand in Tight Economic Times

DENVER, Dec. 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Consumer research confirms what we already know -- that U.S. consumers have cut spending significantly over the past six months. More than one-third have made measurable cutbacks in frequent purchases, such as dining out, according to Booz & Company (October 2008). That creates the opportunity for families to enjoy more healthy home-cooked meals. All it takes is just a little planning and more fresh produce. There is a popular myth that fresh produce is too expensive. It is not -- particularly if you count on potatoes.

Potatoes, a mainstay of traditional diets for centuries, contain essential vitamins and minerals, fiber, and antioxidants and are fat-, sodium- and cholesterol-free. Even better, one serving -- a medium (5.3 ounce) potato will only set you back about 25 cents. Pound for pound, potatoes are still one of the best values in the produce department. To learn more about the potato and ideas for eating better on a budget, visit

"It's easy to keep this vegetable as healthy as it was when it was pulled from the ground," says Linda McCashion, vice president of public relations for the United States Potato Board (USPB). "Just keep food 'partner' ingredients nutritious, too."

Roasted, mashed, baked or au gratin, the USPB offers several suggestions for cutting the shopping bill without sacrificing nutrition ... to the tune of no more than $1.50 per serving!

-- Top baked potatoes with salsa and low fat sour cream, vegetarian chili or ground turkey mixed with taco seasoning, olives and tomatoes, and topped with low fat shredded cheddar cheese

-- Cook Once -- Eat Twice! The key is to make extra potatoes to carry you over to the next meal. Top a Caesar salad with garlic roasted potatoes instead of croutons for lunch or turn Tuesday's pork tenderloin and potato dinner into Wednesday's BBQ pork and potato wrap, complete with shredded cabbage and carrots

-- Use one pan and a microwave to whip up Southwest Potatoes Au Gratin: Cut two potatoes in half lengthwise, then slice across into 1/4-inch-thick half moons. In a 1-quart microwave-safe dish, combine 5-6 raw chicken tenders, a can of diced tomatoes and taco seasoning, mixing well. Arrange potatoes on top in a single layer. Sprinkle low fat shredded cheddar cheese on top. Cover tightly with lid or plastic wrap. Microwave on high for 12 minutes.

    For a host of healthy potato recipes, visit

SOURCE United States Potato Board
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