Raw Potato

By: Michael Lam, MD, MPH

The potato plant is toxic. It contains an alkaloid named solanine that appears in all the external parts of the plant. It is also found in the tender buds of the tubers during the germination process.

Excessive ingestion of raw potato can produce gastro-intestinal, liver, as well as heart damage. Because it is a vegetable that contains a fair amount of starch, it has emollient properties. It can therefore be used externally to soothe the skin and useful for burns. It also antacid properties to help combat any gastric discomfort.

Because of the possible toxicity, it is best to avoid the use of raw potato.