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Are Potatoes Grains?

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Old 05-07-2010, 09:17 PM   #1
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Default Are Potatoes Grains?

Howdy,
I have read that some find where their calories come from, particularly grains, more problematic than calories from other sources.

Question: What do you consider a grain? Is it rice, corn, wheat, oatmeal? Is it also anything starchy such as beans/legumes and potatoes?

Thanks,
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Old 05-07-2010, 09:27 PM   #2
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Potatoes and beans are certainly starchy, but they simply are not grains. Which is fine. If you're simply wanting to watch carbs, you can do that. Watch grains and starchy vegetables.

Or, some people watch grains in particular but are fine with starchy vegetables. The idea is that it's not just carbs per se that may cause problems, but grains themselves. This is a principle of paleo/primal diets. And of course, those with celiac disease must avoid wheat and other gluten-containing grains.
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Old 05-07-2010, 09:29 PM   #3
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To me, potatoes, rice, corn, wheat, and oatmeal are all in the grain category (starch) as far as how I put complete meals together. I also include some of the other starchy veggies in that, like squash and peas. If I'm having corn, peas or potatoes for dinner, they're my side starch. I do not count them as veggies, even though they do have some good stuff in them.

I usually see beans as a protein because I don't eat meat every night and beans are often substituted for meat.

It can be confusing!
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Old 05-08-2010, 03:19 AM   #4
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It depends what approach you're going for.

If you're doing a paleo-type diet, potatoes are not considered a "grain" - grains are things like rice, wheat, buckwheat, millet, etc.

If you're looking at glycemic index, potatoes come in fairly high, and so have a greater impact on your blood sugar.

Basically, you need to experiment and see what works for you. It varies!
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Old 05-08-2010, 09:40 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Viviane View Post
It can be confusing!
Yes it is.
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Old 05-08-2010, 09:47 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by mandalinn82 View Post
It depends what approach you're going for.

If you're doing a paleo-type diet, potatoes are not considered a "grain" - grains are things like rice, wheat, buckwheat, millet, etc.

Basically, you need to experiment and see what works for you. It varies!
My approach so far has been low calorie. I don't cook processed and this has lead naturally for me to veggies, lean protiens, fruit for desserts. I still was including rice, pasta, etc... but fitting it into my allotment. I started reading that for some where their calories come from makes a big difference in weight loss/management. So I started experimenting with SB approach of limiting (not eliminating) my grains.

This seems to have helped but way to soon to tell. Then I started wondering if people who have trouble with wheat, rice the obvious grains, also would have problems with potatoes?

It could be that I am still of the mind set habit that the plate doesn't look right without a protien, veggie, and starch. I hadn't thought about that until now.

How did I know you would say, it depends on the individual
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Old 05-08-2010, 10:00 AM   #7
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Yep, there's not much in weight loss that's one-size-fits-all.

High-starch or high-sugar foods tend to trigger hunger, so I try to limit them and try not to eat them alone.

I have a little more luck controlling potatoes than grains, so I include potatoes more often than grains (but I still have to treat them as a problem food).

I'm not the best example, because I'm struggling with my food plan at the moment. I'm committing to primal or paleo eating (no grain) to see if that helps me get in the groove. I'm thinking I've been trying to incorporate too many post-paleo foods, or am including them too often.
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Old 05-08-2010, 02:14 PM   #8
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I'm not the best example, because I'm struggling with my food plan at the moment.
I happen to think of you as one of my favorite posters You are one of the ones I hoped to see respond to my question. I am always enriched by your thoughts and example. Your tenacity inspires me and has caused me not only to look more carefully into this topic but to also think about it in regards to my son who has Crohn's. So you have helped 2 people so far in my family

Karen
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Old 05-08-2010, 03:44 PM   #9
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Grains look like this when growing. Here's green wheat:



Here's oats



Even corn though it is larger --- they all have got that character of "tall stalk thing with long leaves and ears with well spaced grains."



Potato is a tuber. Potato and its relatives grow under the soil and you have to dig it out.




Grains, beans, tubers -- can all be starchy, so eat paired with a protein if it bothers you blood sugar.

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Old 05-08-2010, 08:01 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Karen925 View Post
I happen to think of you as one of my favorite posters You are one of the ones I hoped to see respond to my question. I am always enriched by your thoughts and example. Your tenacity inspires me and has caused me not only to look more carefully into this topic but to also think about it in regards to my son who has Crohn's. So you have helped 2 people so far in my family

Karen

Thanks. It means a lot.
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Old 05-09-2010, 09:27 AM   #11
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astrophe-
Nice pictures. Thank you for taking the time to post them.
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Old 05-14-2010, 01:47 PM   #12
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It can be confusing, can't it lol. For example, I just learned this year that corn is a grain, not a vegetable . I swear I have seen corn listed as a vegetable on an older copy of Canada's Food Guide!

I basically classify my foods into four groups:

starches: starchy veggies, fruits, wheat pasta, grains etc,
proteins: meats, beans (even though they are starch too)
fats: olive oil, cheese, nuts, occasional treats
unlimited: non starchy veggies, low calorie foods

I try to never include more than one starch or fat in a meal. I don't mind including two proteins like beans and chicken. Non starchy veggies and very low calorie foods are unlimited and basically "all you can eat" (reasonably) until satisfied. I find it easier to classify all carbs as starch instead of grain,beans etc. A one healthy starch per meal rule works for me.
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Old 05-14-2010, 03:38 PM   #13
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Potatoes are a root vegetable, like turnips, carrots, etc.

Grains are corn, millet, oats, etc.

mypyramid.gov has some nice explanations regarding food groups to make things a bit less confusing.
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Old 06-26-2010, 09:43 AM   #14
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Botanically speaking, potatoes are "vegetables" and are technically botanical fruits because they are seed-bearing structures that develop from the ripened ovaries of flowers. I know, TMI
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