Dietary carbohydrates have been shown to influence cognitive performance and satiety in children. However, it remains unclear whether the carbohydrate source is a primary determinant of cognitive performance and satiety. The objective was to compare the effects of white potatoes and other carbohydrate-containing foods on cognitive performance, glycemic response, and satiety in children. On 6 separate mornings, in random order, children (n = 22) consumed 50 g of available carbohydrates from microwaved mashed potatoes (prepared from fresh potatoes then frozen), deep-fried potato strips (French fries), hash browns, white rice, white beans, or skipped a meal. Cognitive performance, glycemic response, and satiety were measured over 180 min. Cognitive performance was measured using a battery of tests assessing verbal declarative memory, spatial memory, short-term memory, working memory, and information processing speed. Although cognitive performance after the treatment meals did not differ from meal skipping, children recalled more words after French fries (9.1 ± 0.4 words) compared with mashed potatoes (8.2 ± 0.3 words; p = 0.001) and white rice (8.4 ± 0.3 words; p = 0.04) on the verbal declarative memory test. Blood glucose concentrations were higher after white rice compared with white beans, mashed potatoes, and hash browns (p < 0.05). Change from baseline subjective average appetite (mm/kcal) was lower after mashed potatoes compared with all other treatment meals (p < 0.05). In conclusion, verbal declarative memory was higher after French fries and subjective average appetite was lower after mashed potatoes. Future longitudinal studies are needed to confirm these short-term findings and to elucidate the mechanism of action.
Keywords: carbohydrates; children; cognitive performance; enfants; glucides; glycemic response; performance cognitive; pommes de terre blanches; réponse glycémique; satiety; satiété; white potatoes.