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Sweet Potato Fries: Are They Healthy?

We are repeatedly reminded to avoid french fries for a wide variety of reasons, and one of those reasons is they make us wider! But what about their more healthy-seeming cousin: sweet potato fries?

Most restaurants use hydrogenated vegetable oil to cook up fries, and that oil is known to clog your arteries, promote heart disease, interrupt metabolic processes, cause belly fat that crowds the organs and strains the heart, and increase cancer risk. Starchy foods subjected to high heat create acrylamides, which a Swedish study found to cause cancer in rats. Things like brain-cell function, hormones, gland function, oxygen transport, cell-wall function, and digestive-tract operation are also negatively affected by hydrogenated oil.

Do you think they have a separate vat of heart-healthy canola oil waiting to fry up your sweet potato fries? No such luck.

While sweet potatoes are considered a great source of vitamin A, I'm sorry to break the news to you, they're still deep-fried. For that reason alone, you're better off ordering a baked potato, or better yet, a side salad, with your meal.

Following food philosopher Michael Pollan's advice, if you're craving junk food, make it yourself. DIY sweet potato fries are easy to bake: cut up a couple of sweet spuds, drizzle with a little olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, then bake. For a little more guidance, check out this sweet potato french fry recipe.

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