Potatoes: The Perfect Cutting Carbs

Handful of potatoes Handful of potatoes

During the summer undertaking my Masters degree I spent £10 on a rice cooker – a simple no frills cooker that did the job. Ever since then my diet has mostly been rice, white or brown, with whatever I happened to have cooked in the fridge. I thought it was the best thing ever since you can have something you can eat large amounts of when you’re bulking (white), but also something more fibrous and nutritional if you’re trying to cut (brown). Even more so, you can cook it without paying attention! This was going into Autumn and Winter though so it didn’t matter.

Come early Summer time I’m not on holiday for a while yet so I’m happy to keep cutting steadily and reduce my body fat levels. What I quickly realised was that eating rice makes you so hungry on a cut. The key to a successful cut is keeping fat and proteins at good levels whilst manipulating carbohydrates regularly to force fat oxidation to occur in your body. On lower carb days I struggled and decided to look for an alternative and hey presto – we have potato.

There are a variety of reasons why I believe they’re amazing for a cut but let’s start with how they make you feel. First, they’re tasty and versatile to eat – if you want it boiled one week go nuts, mashed works if you have leftovers or want to treat yourself and add a bit of butter and cream, classic baked potato or if you want something fancy, try making some fries. Just bake them or be careful with the oil! What’s even more, they make you feel full. To give you an idea of how many you need to eat, check out 20potatoesaday where a guy ate nothing but potato for two months. For an average person they needed 20 a day (which is HELL of a lot mind you, I eat maybe 6 at most?) so, as an active athlete you will have a hard time eating too many.

As an example, my typical carb measurements when bulking was about 300g rice or 340g potatoes, and on a cut I should have 215g rice, but I can allow myself 275g potatoes!

Additional benefits I’ll just skim through but compared to other white carbs like pasta and rice, potatoes have a lot more fibre, vitamins and minerals that’ll help support you on a caloric deficit. They’re a vegetable rather than a grain and some people do have more digestion problems on grains versus vegetables – you may not think you have a problem (and neither do I) but I can say I feel better on the inside after two weeks. All in all you enjoy it like a typical ‘white carb’ but with a handful of ‘brown carb’ benefits. It’s a win-win situation and they’re cheap as chips (get it?). I highly recommend you give them a go!

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