Carrots are one of the most prominent elements in your kitchen refrigerator. Modern day cultivation and storage ensures that we get carrots all year round. Carrots come in various colors that include red, white, orange and purple. No matter which color of carrot you are eating, all of them are loaded with nutrients. The health benefits carrots provide include skin health, eye heath, heart health and a lot more. Refer to our ‘Health Benefits’ tab to learn all what carrots are good for.
Naturally sweet, delicious, fresh and crunchy, carrots are healthy additions that you should make to the list of vegetable in your everyday diet. Carrots, which are root vegetables come with a lot of healthy compounds such as beta-carotenes, falcarinol, vitamin A, minerals and anti-oxidants. Since early ages carrots have been tied to eye health and doctors have been advising adding carrots to your diet. Health benefits carrots bring to your diet also include increasing the health of your skin, improving the immune system, improving digestion of food, better cardiovascular health, detoxification of the whole and boost oral hygiene and health.
Carrots come in various sizes and colors. Depending on the variety, a carrot may be as small as 2 inches is size or can be as large as three feet. The diameter can range from half an inch to two inches. Along with different shapes, carrots come in different colors as well. The 4 different types of colors of carrots are Orange, Red, Purple and White.Not matter which color or variety you chose, the health benefits carrots have shall always be huge.
In fact, purple, white and red carrots were the only varieties of colors that were cultivated before the 16th century. The orange color of carrots have been the most recent additions to the variety of carrots. In case you want to learn more about the history of cultivation of carrots, you can do so here.
Also, do not forget to read the our tabs on ‘Cleaning and Preparing’, ‘Nutrients’, ‘Health Benefits’ to know more about the health benefits carrots have and how you can maximize your own health benefits from them.
Some other sources to learn about carrots and the health benefits carrots have
Carrots are a very healthy addition to our diet. Buying good quality carrots will help to ensure that you get the best nutrients available in carrots.
Storage: Carrots can keep in the refrigerator for up to three months if properly prepared for storage. Remove all the green stubble to prevent the carrot from rotting. Allow the carrot outer skin to dry in sun for a day or so. Do not wash until ready to use carrot. Place carrots into refrigerator.
Use the bubble wrap with the small textured bubbles. The bubble wrap will enable the perfect amount of moisture to stay close to the carrots, but the texture of the bubble wrap will prevent that moisture from gathering right on the surface of the carrots. The bubble wrap will add up to two extra weeks of freshness to your carrots. Plastic bags lead to rotting.
Place your wrapped carrots in the vegetable drawer of the fridge.
You can use carrot as fresh, frozen, canned or even pickled.
Cleaning & Cutting: Wash the carrots under cool running water. Brush them with a nylon-bristled brush to remove any dirt or impurities from the surface. Washing is a necessary step to remove all pesticides and any lingering dirt. Sometimes carrots look a bit dingy or funny. This will go away when you peel off the outer layer.
Greens deplete the carrot of both moisture and nutrients. Use a cutting board and sharp knife to cut the greens from the carrot. Always use caution when handling sharp knives.
How to Buy: Look for a good, smooth form and a hearty orange colour. Select carrots that still have greens attached, as these tend to keep better and taste fresher. The leaves themselves should be fresh and bright green.
Special Steps: Avoid choosing carrots with blemishes or cracks, wilting greens, a flabby or rubbery texture, or carrots that have a “sunburned” green area at the tops.
TIP: The sugar content in carrots makes them an ideal healthy alternative to sugar in cakes and muffins. Add some carrot and reduce the amount of sugar used.
Ideas for what to Make with Carrots: Carrot Juice, Puree your carrots (Pureed carrots can be added to many different recipes including sauces, meatloaf, and casseroles), Julienne your carrots (Julienne carrots can add a delicious crunch that will make your meals pop. Add them to everything from salads to desserts.), Make carrot Halvah, Carrot Cake, use carrot to make different juices, Salt and Pepper Carrots for delicious and healthy snack.
Naturally sugary, delicious and crunchy, carrots are healthy additions that you can make to the vegetable list in your diet. Indeed, these root vegetables come with wholesome health benefiting compounds such as beta-carotenes, falcarinol, vitamin A, minerals and anti-oxidants in ample amounts.
Mineral Content: Carrots also compose healthy levels of minerals like copper, calcium, potassium, manganese and phosphorus. Potassium is an important component of cell and body fluids that helps controlling heart rate and blood pressure by countering effects of sodium. Manganese is used by the body as a co-factor for the antioxidant enzyme, superoxide dismutase.
Vitamin & Compounds: They are exceptionally rich source of carotenes and vitamin-A, Vitamin K and Vitamin C. 100 g fresh carrot contains 8285 µg of beta-carotene and 16706 IU of vitamin A. Fresh roots are also good in vitamin C; provide about 9% of RDA. Vitamin C is water soluble anti-oxidant, they are especially rich in many B-complex groups of vitamins such as folic acid, vitamin B-6, thiamin, pantothenic acid, etc., that acts as co-factors to enzymes during substrate metabolism in the body.
Water Content: Carrot is 87 percent water by weight.
Carbohydrate Content: Carrot provide only 10 calories per 100 g.
With this orange crunchy powerfood, you get vitamin A and a host of other powerful health benefits including beautiful skin, cancer prevention, and anti-aging.
Vision Health: Carrots are good for the eyes. Carrots are rich in beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the liver. Vitamin A is transformed in the retina, to rhodopsin, a purple pigment necessary for night vision. Beta-carotene has also been shown to protect against macular degeneration and senile cataracts.
Slow Down Aging: The high level of beta-carotene acts as an antioxidant to cell damage done to the body through regular metabolism. It help slows down the aging of cells.
Skin Health: Vitamin A and antioxidants protects the skin from sun damage. Deficiencies of vitamin A cause dryness to the skin, hair and nails. Vitamin A prevents premature wrinkling, acne, dry skin, pigmentation, blemishes, and uneven skin tone. It helps for outside healthier skin also. Carrots are used as an inexpensive and very convenient facial mask. Just mix grated carrot with a bit of honey
Helps prevent Infection: Carrots are known by herbalists to prevent infection. They can be used on cuts – shredded raw or boiled and mashed.
Cleanses the body: Vitamin A assists the liver in flushing out the toxins from the body. It reduces the bile and fat in the liver. The fibers present in carrots help clean out the colon and hasten waste movement.
Heart health: Studies show that diets high in carotenoids are associated with a lower risk of heart disease. Carrots have not only beta-carotene but also alpha-carotene and lutein. People who ate more than six carrots a week are less likely to suffer a stroke than those who ate only one carrot a month or less.
Protects teeth and gums: Carrots clean your teeth and mouth. They scrape off plaque and food particles just like toothbrushes or toothpaste. Carrots stimulate gums and trigger a lot of saliva, which being alkaline, balances out the acid-forming, cavity-forming bacteria. The minerals in carrots prevent tooth damage.
Diabetes: Carrots are good for blood sugar regulation due to the presence of carotenoids. Carotenoids inversely affect insulin resistance and thus lower blood sugar, thereby helping diabetic patients live a normal, healthy life. They also regulate the amount of insulin and glucose that is being used and metabolized by the body, providing a more even and healthy fluctuation for diabetic patients.
Brain Health: Carrot extract has been found to be useful for the management of cognitive dysfunctions and may offer memory improvement.
Cholesterol lowering: Pectin in carrots lowers the serum cholesterol levels. The regular consumption of carrots also reduces cholesterol levels because the soluble fibers in carrots bind with bile acids.
Congestion: Carrot juice is very effective in dispelling mucus from the ear, nose and throat area, easing nasal congestion, sinusitis, phlegm and mucus in the throat and other similar disorders.
Constipation: Take five parts of carrot juice with one part of spinach juice regularly to regulate chronic constipation problems.
Emphysema: If you smoke or are exposed to second-hand smoke, taking carrot juice regularly may well save your life.
Fertility: One of the reasons for infertility is lack of nutrients and enzymes in your dietary. Carrot juice taken regularly, is able to nourish your body back to fertility.
Inflammation: Its anti-inflammatory effect greatly helps reduce arthritis, rheumatism, gout and other inflammations.
Immune system: It does wonders for boosting the immune system by increasing the production and performance of white blood cells; building resistance to various kinds of infections.
Kidney Health: The healing properties in carrot juices are helpful for cleansing and filtering the kidneys. Although many juicing “experts” say that people with kidney failure shouldn’t drink juices, this story tells you about the miracle of carrot juice for kidneys.
Pregnancy: Drinking carrot juice regularly during pregnancy, especially during the last few months, will reduce the chances of jaundice in baby.
Thread worms: One small cup of carrot juice in the morning taken daily for a week may help clear up thread worms in children.
Cancer: Studies have shown carrots reduce the risk of lung cancer, breast cancer and colon cancer. Researchers have just discovered falcarinol and falcarindiol which they feel cause the anticancer properties.
Falcarinol is a natural pesticide produced by the carrot that protects its roots from fungal diseases. Carrots are one of the only common sources of this compound. By eating carrot cancer risk can be lower by 1/3.
Acidosis: The vital organic alkaline elements in carrots help balance the blood acidity and blood sugar.
Acne: Its powerful cleansing properties are effective in detoxifying the liver, thus overall effective for acne which are caused by toxicity of the blood.
Anemia: Carrot’s molecules are closest to human’s hemoglobin molecules, making it very beneficial in blood-building.
Asthma: The anti-oxidants effectively protects the respiratory system from infections and free-radical attacks.
Weight management: Carrots are low in calories, at the same time filling, which reduces cravings.
Digestive Benefits: Carrots are a good source of fiber which helps in regularizing bowel movements and aids digestion.
Liver Protection: Carrot extract may help to protect your liver from the toxic effects of environmental chemicals.
Unsafe For Infants: Some studies prove that carrots are unsafe for small children.
Allergic Reactions: There are few individuals who are hypersensitive to the carrot. Some common side effects among such people are skin rashes, diarrhea, anaphylactic reactions, hives and swelling. Such allergies are caused due to the allergen present in carrot pollen.
Withdrawal Effects: Some people have the habit of compulsive consuming carrots every day. This can result in craving for carrots. Irritability, insomnia, nervousness and water brash are some of the negative effects of withdrawal from the habit.
Skin Discoloration: Carrots leave the skin abnormally yellow to orange in color, when taken in large amounts. This discoloration is caused by beta carotene, a carotenoid content in carrots. This discoloration can be seen on palms, hands, face and soles of the feet.
Not Recommended For Breastfeeding Women: Carrots are rich in vitamins and minerals, which are very important for the body. But studies have proven that carrot changes the flavor of breast milk. So breast feeding women should avoid drinking carrot juice in excess.
Gas: Carrots contain 12 grams of carbohydrates and 4 grams of fiber. When fiber and carbohydrates doesn’t get digested in your intestine, they become fermented in the colon. This results in gas formation in the intestines, leading to stomach cramps, bloating and gas trap.
Nutrient Absorption: Generally fiber interferes with the absorption of zinc, iron, magnesium and other nutrients in the body. Consuming carrots in large quantity can result in deficiency of these vital nutrients, which are essential for the body. They lack fat and protein, which are vital for your body too.
Pesticides: Studies have shown that carrots contain 26 pesticides. Out of these 26 pesticides, 8 can potentially cause cancer; 16 interfere with hormones in the body; 3 of them cause nervous problems, and 7 cause reproductive or development problems. If you want to keep these pesticides out of your body, you need to limit your carrot intake.
Although carrots are generally eaten raw or in salads, there are many more delicacies that you can make with them.
1) Carrot Salad with Honey-Lemon Dressing: A combination of carrots and celery root in a quickly shredded slaw. You can have it when you want to try something different than the daily green salad.
2) Roasted Carrots: Enjoy as a healthy snack in your evenings. A delicious recipe that your children shall love.
3) Carrot Cake: A delicious cake full of nutrient value. Where else can you get this combination?
4) “Gajar Ka Halwa”: Ask any Indian, they would vouch for the gajar ka halwa that their mothers’ prepared. We bring to you the same delicacy that is a perfect combination of nutrition and taste.