Human depend on plants as primary food resources, not only to gain access to the basic carbohydrates and amino acids but also for a variety of metabolites that we lack the ability to synthesize. Plants are the treasure house for secondary metabolites, of which many have beneficial anti-oxidative capacities for human health.
Antioxidant are chemical compounds that inhibit oxidation, a chemical reaction which can produce free radicals and chain reactions and may damage the cells of organisms. Antioxidants can protect against the cell damage that free radicals cause, known as oxidative stress. Oxidative stress has been linked to heart disease, cancer, vision loss, arthritis, stroke, gastrointestinal disorders, respiratory diseases, DNA breakage, immune deficiency and other inflammatory or ischemic conditions. Antioxidants are said to help neutralize free radicals in our bodies and this is thought to boost overall health.

The best sources of antioxidants are plant-based foods, especially fruits and vegetables; broccoli, spinach, carrot, potato, sweet potato, cabbage, asparagus, avocado, beetroot, radish, lettuce, squash, pumpkin etc. Among several food sources, potato is one that can help to match all the constraints worldwide due to its highly nutritive value, diverse distribution pattern and its current cultivation and demand. Potato has been identified by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations as a staple and sustainable food for the growing world population.
Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) is one of the best nutrient-dense vegetables which have naturally high levels of antioxidant compounds like: vitamin C, phenols, carotenoids, flavonoids, and anthocyanin, with an array of health promoting effects. The concentration of the antioxidant has a range of variation depend on the flesh color of potato tuber. Potato is also an important source of carbohydrates, starch, protein, vitamins B6 and high percentage of essential amino acids.
Antioxidant substances have a beneficial influence on human being, as they have shown promising health-promoting effects in human cell culture and clinical studies including anti-cancer, anti-hyperlipidemic, anti-hypertensive, anti-inflammatory, anti-obesity and anti-diabetic properties. The nutritional value of the potato is so great that it may be the only human food for some time, without detriment to health.
Considering the beneficial of antioxidant in potato, Advanced Seed Research and Biotech Centre (ASRBC), has developed 3 advanced antioxidant rich potato lines having different flesh color and one of them is already registered as potato variety named, ACI Alu 20 (Royel) by National Seed Board, Seed Wing, Ministry of Agriculture, Bangladesh.

Mohsina Afreen
Associate Scientist,