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Green potatoes are toxic, and those shoots are bad news too

Adriana Velez is Food Editor for SheKnows. She spent her formative years in Brooklyn, which pretty much explains everything about her. She now lives somewhere else and has discovered life after kale and kombucha. She's written for Civil ...

What makes green spots on your potatoes so dangerous

You see them everywhere — potatoes that are greenish on one end or have an overall green hue to them. They look harmless enough, like they were just picked a little early. No big deal, right? Well, apparently those green potatoes are straight-up toxic.

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That green doesn't mean the potato is a little underripe. It's a tuber (similar to a root), and ripeness isn't exactly a thing for potatoes like it is for other produce. The green indicates the presence of a chemical called solanine, and so can the presence of shoots. And it can be triggered by light and warmth. But here's why you want to avoid it.

Eating a lot of solanine can lead to all sorts of truly gnarly symptoms, including headaches, dizziness, nausea, stomach cramps, vomiting and diarrhea.

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But don't freak out. You can still eat a green potato; just cut out the green areas and the shoots. And if you do happen to eat a small amount of that green area, you'll probably be all right. Just don't make a meal of the stuff.

You can keep your potatoes from going green by storing them in a cool, dark space in your kitchen.

Before you go, check out 50 one-pot meals for an easy comfort food fix.

What makes green spots on your potatoes so dangerous
Image: Brandi Bidot/Sheknows
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