Potato Starch: a Review of Physicochemical, Functional and Nutritional Properties

  • John H. Dupuis
  • Qiang LiuEmail author
Invited Review


With a rapid increase in type-2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) throughout the world in recent years, it has also become a major human health issue. Today, more than one third of the world's population is living with diabetes or prediabetes. Expenditures associated with medical treatment constitutes a huge financial burden on our society and costs billions of taxpayers’ dollars. Although the etiology is multifactorial, diet has been identified as the single most important contributing environmental factor to the development of this disease. Potatoes are an important agricultural commodity as a staple food and for many industrial uses. Although native potato starch is resistant to digestion, it is rapidly digestible in fully cooked potatoes. It results in the high glycemic index (GI) of most processed potato products, which are not suitable for people with T2DM and obesity. Due to the complexity of foods containing different chemical compositions, multiphase structures, and composite systems, we know little about the structural characteristics of starch in cooked and cooled potato products, how food processing can influences the structure of starch to create nutritional benefits, and the mechanism of low GI potato-based foods. In this chapter, we will address the role of potato starch chemistry and structure on nutritional properties of potato and how changes in the physical, chemical and nutritional properties of starch occur as they are subjected to different treatment conditions for potato food processing and nutrition.


Gelatinization Rheology Retrogradation Resistant starch Digestibility 


Con un rápido incremento en diabetes mellitus (T2DM) en el mundo en años recientes, también se ha convertido en un tema importante en la salud humana. Actualmente hay más de 1/3 de la población mundial viviendo con diabetes o con prediabetes. Los gastos asociados con el tratamiento médico constituyen una enorme carga financiera en nuestra sociedad, y cuesta billones de dólares de nuestros impuestos. Aun cuando la etiología es multifactorial, se ha identificado a la dieta como el único factor ambiental más importante que contribuye al desarrollo de la enfermedad. La papa es un producto agrícola importante como un alimento básico y para muchos usos industriales. Aun cuando el almidón original de la papa es resistente a la digestión, es fácilmente digerible en papas cocinadas completamente. Esto resulta en un índice glicémico alto (GI) en la mayoría de los productos procesados de la papa, no deseable para las personas con T2DM y obesidad. Debido a la complejidad de los alimentos en diferentes composiciones químicas, con estructura multifase y un sistema compuesto, sabemos poco acerca de las características estructurales del almidón en papa cocinada y enfriada. Tampoco entendemos como el procesamiento de la comida influencia la estructura deseable del almidón para beneficio nutricional, ni entendemos el mecanismo de bajo GI derivado de algunos alimentos de papa. En este capítulo, mencionaremos el papel de la química del almidón de la papa y la estructura de las propiedades nutricionales de la papa, y cómo los cambios en las propiedades físicas químicas y nutricionales del almidón se presentan a medida que se someten a diferentes condiciones de tratamientos para el procesamiento y nutrición de alimentos de la papa.


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Copyright information

© The Potato Association of America 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Food, Nutrition, and Health Program, Faculty of Land and Food SystemsThe University of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.Guelph Research and Development Center, Agriculture and Agri-Food CanadaGuelphCanada

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