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I'm going to rank potato as the #3 survival food. While potato can certainly be used as a sole nutrition source if cooked, it also needs to be cooked to be safe and cooking takes a while. Like most of our survival foods, eating as a soup is preferred, especially with potatoes to ensure it is fully cooked. Both onion and lambs quarters can be eaten raw which helps as survival foods.

I am including Cassava, Sweet Potatoes, and Yams here as these are staple crops throughout the world with their own pro's and con's.

Potatoes contain solanine and can poison you leading to anticholinergic effects which can be very serious and contribute to heart failure. Potatoes must be cooked thoroughly to prevent this, and potatoes that have turned green at all should be discarded. Solanine supposedly is not destroyed by cooking but in any case much of the solanine is rendered inactive by cooking. However not complete enough to render green potatoes edible; these should always be discarded.

Potatoes do store pretty well but not as well as onion. Blight and other diseases are also much more prevalent in potatoes than lambs quarters or onions.

While living on potatoes would likely give more energy and be more satisfying than onions or lambs quarters, these few caveats can make it a more risky bet to use as a lifeline in survival, as the irish potato famine demonstrated [1] .

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