Why do potatoes turn green?
When potatoes are exposed to direct sunlight, they will naturally start to turn green. The green color comes from chlorophyll, a term you probably haven’t heard since middle school science class. Chlorophyll is a harmless compound that gives plants their green color.
Are green potatoes safe to eat?
According to the National Capital Poison Center, green potatoes are not safe to eat. When chlorophyll increases in a potato, turning it green, it’s likely that the compound solanine has also increased. A higher level of solanine causes potatoes to taste bitter and can even lead to health problems.
When eaten in large quantities, this compound can lead to digestive issues like nausea and diarrhea, as well as headaches and neurological problems. It’s helpful to remember that you’d have to eat a serious amount of green potatoes to start to feel these effects.
That being said, a good rule when it comes to potatoes is this: If it tastes bitter, don’t eat it.
Tip to gain maximum nutrition from potato:
- When cooked in a healthy way, potato skins contribute to our vegetable intake and provide us with potassium, iron, and niacin. Potassium and niacin both aid your body in helping cells function and communicate with one another.
- It is healthier to eat a potato cooked unpeeled as the skin provides a good amount of fiber and essential nutrients.
- **You need to make sure it is scrubbed and clean of dirt and spouts though**