Is a Serving of Sour Cream & Onion Chips Good for You?

Sour cream and onion chips offer some nutrients, but you should consume them in moderation.
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Snacks make up a part of a healthy diet, and the University of North Carolina recommends eating every three to five hours throughout the day. Sour cream and onion potato chips, consumed as an occasional treat, can contribute to a balanced diet. They contain some essential vitamins and minerals that benefit your health, but their salt and fat content decrease their nutritional value. Make sure to watch your portion size when consuming sour cream and onion chips, and refrain from making them a regular part of your diet.


Sour cream and onion chips contain potassium, an essential mineral. Each 2-ounce portion of chips has 755 milligrams of potassium, or 16 percent of your daily recommended potassium intake, according to guidelines set by the Institute of Medicine. You need potassium for healthy nerve function -- it allows your nerves to communicate with each other, and also helps your nerves communicate with your muscles and heart. In addition, it supports your metabolism and helps your body convert carbohydrates into energy.

Vitamin C

Sour cream and onion chips also serve as a source of vitamin C. Vitamin C helps you produce carnitine, a chemical that converts fat into useable energy. Getting enough vitamin C also strengthens your skin, bones and blood vessels by boosting collagen production and protects your cells from reactive oxygen species, a family of chemicals that cause disease. Each serving of sour cream and onion chips contains 21 milligrams of vitamin C. This provides 28 percent of the daily vitamin C intake recommendation set by the Institute of Medicine for women or 23 percent for men.


Snacking on sour cream and onion chips boosts your niacin, or vitamin B-3, intake. Niacin helps to regulate your body's cholesterol levels and protects against high cholesterol(ref5 under "function" and "disease treatment"). It also helps you store energy in the form of fat, and allows you to break down nutrients from your diet -- including fats and carbohydrates -- into energy. A 2-ounce portion of sour cream and onion chips provides 2.3 milligrams of vitamin B-3 -- 16 percent of the recommended daily niacin intake for women or 16 percent for women, according to the Institute of Medicine.

Sodium and Other Considerations

Sour cream and onion chips also have a few nutritional drawbacks, including their sodium and fat content. Each serving of chips contains 311 milligrams of sodium, more than one-fifth of your daily allowance set by the Institute of Medicine. A diet high in sodium threatens your health, causing high blood pressure and potentially increasing your risk of cancer, explains the Linus Pauling Institute. A serving of sour cream and onion chips also contains 19 grams of fat, including 5 grams of harmful saturated fat.

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