Are Sweet Potatoes Paleo?


Sweet potatoes are very starchy, but they’re also high in fiber and various micronutrients. The fiber helps slow the digestion of the carbohydrates, preventing a spike in blood sugar. Most of us living a Paleo lifestyle prefer to avoid a spike in blood sugar because a spike leads to a crash, leaving us feeling tired, cranky, and craving more carbs. Chronically high blood sugar levels also lead to insulin resistance, a precursor to metabolic diseases such as diabetes.

The Micronutrients in Sweet Potatoes

Sweet potatoes are very nutritious, containing tons of vitamin A and various B vitamins. They’re also fairly rich in trace metals like manganese, phosphorous, and potassium. When baked, sweet potatoes get an increase in their vitamin C and polyphenol content, both of which are vital for maintaining a strong immune system.

Carbohydrates and Fiber

Because sweet potatoes are so high in carbohydrates, but also high in fiber, they can serve as an excellent, Paleo-friendly way to replenish those glycogen stores after a hard workout. While a lot of people living a Paleo lifestyle like to come down hard on carbs, different levels work for different people and different situations. If you like your heavy workouts, you’ll probably need some extra carbs on those workout days. If you’re less active, you might want to lay off on the carbs. It’s all N=1 so don’t let anyone tell you what’s best for your body.

For more information on the nutritional content of sweet potatoes and their different varieties, check out this post.