Last Editorial Review: 6/11/2021
Other Name(s):

Irish Potato, Ja Ying Ye, Papa, Patatas, Patate, Patate Irlandaise, Pomme de Terre, Pomme de Terre Blanche, Pomme de Terre Irlandaise, Solanum tuberosum, White Potato.


Potato is a plant. The fleshy part of the root (potato) is commonly eaten as a vegetable. Potato is also used to make medicine.

People take raw potato juice for stomach disorders and water retention (edema). A purified protein powder made from potato is mixed with water and used to control appetite for weight loss.

Some people put raw potato directly on the affected area for arthritis, infections, boils, burns, and sore eyes.

In foods, potato is eaten, used as a source of starch, and fermented into alcohol.

How does it work?

Potatoes might limit appetite so people can lose weight. A chemical in the potato peel might also prevent bacteria from attaching to cells. Potatoes are a source of vitamin C, iron, riboflavin, and carbohydrates.


Vitamin D Deficiency: How Much Vitamin D Is Enough? See Slideshow

Uses & Effectiveness

Insufficient Evidence to Rate Effectiveness for...


  • Stomach disorders.
  • Obesity.
  • Other conditions.
APPLIED TO THE SKIN More evidence is needed to rate the effectiveness of potato for these uses.

Natural Medicines Comprehensive Database rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate (detailed description of each of the ratings).

Side Effects

Unblemished, ripe potatoes eaten as food or taken as medicine seem safe for most people. Damaged potatoes, green potatoes, and sprouts contain poisonous chemicals that cannot be destroyed by cooking. These poisonous chemicals can cause headache, flushing, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, stomach pain, thirst, restlessness, and even death.

There isn't enough information to know whether it's safe to put raw potato on the skin as a treatment.


Next to red peppers, you can get the most vitamin C from ________________. See Answer

Special Precautions & Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Unblemished, ripe potatoes are safe for pregnant and breast-feeding women in food amounts. But don't use potato as medicine until more is known about how it might affect an unborn or nursing infant.

Diabetes: Potatoes can affect blood sugar control. If you have diabetes, monitor your potato intake as you would any carbohydrate.


Medications for dissolving blood clots (Thrombolytic Drugs)Interaction Rating: Moderate Be cautious with this combination.Talk with your health provider.

Potatoes contain a chemical that decreases blood clotting. Taking large amounts of potato with medications used for dissolving blood clots might increase the chance of bleeding and bruising.

Some medications used for dissolving blood clots include alteplase (Activase), anistreplase (Eminase), reteplase (Retavase), streptokinase (Streptase), and urokinase (Abbokinase).


The appropriate dose of potato depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for potato. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.

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Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.


Agrawal A. Potato peel extract holds potential as antiboitic. Reuters Health May 23, 2000. www.medscape.com (Accessed 23 May 2000).

Hill AJ, Peikin SR, Ryan CA, Blundell JE. Oral administration of proteinase inhibitor II from potatoes reduces energy intake in man. Physiol Behav 1990;48:241-6. View abstract.

Klement P, Liao P, Bajzar L. A novel approach to arterial thrombolysis. Blood 1999;94:2735-43. View abstract.

Kopin AS, Mathes WF, McBride EW, et al. The cholecystokinin-A receptor mediates inhibition of food intake yet is not essential for the maintenance of body weight. J Clin Invest 1999;103:383-91. View abstract.

Lam WF, Gielkens HA, de Boer SY, et al. Influence of hyperglycemia on the satiating effect of CCK in humans. Physiol Behav 1998;65:505-11. View abstract.

Redlitz A, Nicolini FA, Malycky JL, et al. Inducible carboxypeptidase activity. A role in clot lysis in vivo. Circulation 1996;93:1328-30. View abstract.

Satietrol press releases. PacificHealth Labs, Inc., Woodbridge, NJ. www.satietrol.com/press.htm and www.satietrol.com/press1.htm (Accessed 10 January 2000).