Nutritional value of carrot

Nutritional value of carrot

The carrot (Daucus carota) is a nutrient-dense root rich in antioxidants, fiber, beta carotene, and other vitamins and minerals. Research suggests that carrots may improve vision, promote skin health, and reduce the risk of some forms of cancer.

In this article, we will further explore how carrots can benefit human health and the potential risks they may cause.

A Brief On Carrots
People have been eating carrots for over 5,000 years. The vegetable originated in the Middle East and Afghanistan and was initially available only in purple and yellow colors. The familiar orange carrot was developed only later, in the 1600s.

Researchers today are breeding carrots in different colors, including yellow, bright red, and dark orange to make them more appealing. But what is grabbing attention is the set of pigments in carrots that offer important benefits.

What Are The Health Benefits Of Eating Carrots?
1. May Promote Eye Health
Vitamin A, in recommended quantities, is essential for good vision, and carrots offer the nutrient in abundance. If a person is deprived of vitamin A for too long, the outer segments of the eyes’ photoreceptors begin to deteriorate. This leads to night blindness.

Insufficient vitamin A can disrupt the normal chemical processes involved in vision. Restoring adequate vitamin A intake can facilitate vision health.

2. May Reduce Risk Of Cancer
Carrots contain numerous phytochemicals that are well-studied for their anticancer properties . A few of these compounds include beta-carotene and other carotenoids. These compounds promote immunity and activate certain proteins that inhibit cancer cells. Studies show that the juice from carrots can combat leukemia as well.

The carotenoids present in carrots may reduce the risk of stomach, colon, prostate, lung, and breast cancers in women.

Some believe carrots may also reduce oral cancer risk. However, more research is warranted in this regard.

3. May Promote Skin Health
Carrots are rich in carotenoids. Research suggests that fruits and vegetables rich in these compounds can improve skin appearance and also help people look relatively younger.

However, overconsuming carrots (or other foods high in carotenoids) can result in a condition called carotenemia, wherein your skin appears yellow or orange .

4. May Enhance Hair Growth
Carrots are powerhouses of vitamins A and C, carotenoids, potassium, and other antioxidants. Anecdotal evidence suggests that the veggies may contribute to hair health. However, more research is needed in this regard.

5. May Aid Weight Loss
Raw, fresh carrots are about 88% water. A medium carrot has only about 25 calories. Hence, including carrots in your diet is a smart way of filling yourself up without piling on calories.

Carrots also contain fiber. In a study, meals containing whole and blended carrots resulted in higher satiety levels in the test subjects .

6. May Regulate Blood Pressure
One study claimed that carrot juice contributed to a 5% reduction in systolic blood pressure. The nutrients present in carrot juice, including fiber, potassium, nitrates, and vitamin C, were found to aid this effect.

7. May Aid Diabetes Treatment
Following a healthy, balanced diet and maintaining healthy weight can reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. In studies, low blood levels of vitamin A were found in individuals with diabetes. The abnormalities in glucose metabolism would need an increased need to fight oxidative stress, and this is where the antioxidant vitamin A may help.

Carrots are high in fiber. Studies show that increased fiber intake can improve glucose metabolism in individuals with diabetes . The veggies can be added to a diabetes meal.

8. May Boost Immunity
Vitamin A regulates the functioning of your system and prevents infections. It achieves this by boosting your body’s immunity . Get this immune-boosting vitamin from carrots. Carrots also contain vitamin C that contributes to the production of collagen, which is essential for wound healing. This nutrient further contributes to a strong immune system .

9. May Strengthen Bones
Vitamin A influences bone cell metabolism. Carotenoids are associated with improved bone health .Though there is no direct research stating that carrots can help improve bone health, their vitamin A content may help. More studies are needed to further understand this mechanism.

10. May Lower Cholesterol Levels
As per rat studies, carrot consumption can reduce cholesterol absorption and increase the antioxidant status of your body. These effects can also promote cardiovascular health .Raw carrots are also rich in a fiber called pectin that may help lower cholesterol .

11. Are Good For The Teeth And Gums
Chewing of carrots may promote oral cleanliness . Some believe carrots may also freshen breath, though there is no research to substantiate the statement. Anecdotal evidence suggests that carrots may neutralize the citric and malic acids usually left behind in your mouth, promoting oral health.

12. May Promote Liver Health And Eliminate Toxins
Carrots contain glutathione. The antioxidant was found to have the potential to treat liver damage caused by oxidative stress .The veggies are also high in plant flavonoids and beta-carotene, both of which stimulate and support your overall liver function. The beta-carotene in carrots may also combat liver diseases .

13. May Help Treat PCOS
Carrots are non-starchy veggies with a low glycemic index. These properties may make them a good treatment for PCOS. However, there is no direct research that states that carrots can help in PCOS treatment.

These are the multiple ways carrots can benefit you. We saw a few of the powerful nutrients in carrots. In the following section, we will look at their complete nutritional profile.

What Is The Nutritional Profile Of Carrots?
CALORIE INFORMATION
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Calories 52.5 (220 kJ) 3%
From Carbohydrate 46.6 (195 kJ)
From Fat 2.6 (10.9 kJ)
From Protein 3.3 (13.8 kJ)
From Alcohol 0.0 (0.0 kJ)
CARBOHYDRATES
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Total Carbohydrate 12.3 g 4%
Dietary Fiber 3.6 g 14%
Starch 1.8 g
Sugars 6.1 g
PROTEIN & AMINO ACIDS
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Protein 1.2 g 2%
VITAMINS
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Vitamin A 21383 IU 248%
Vitamin C 7.6 mg 13%
Vitamin D ~ ~
Vitamin E (Alpha Tocopherol) 0.8 mg 4%
Vitamin K 16.9 mcg 21%
Thiamin 0.1 mg 6%
Riboflavin 0.1 mg 4%
Niacin 1.3 mg 6%
Vitamin B6 0.2 mg 9%
Folate 24.3 mcg 6%
Vitamin B12 0.0 mcg 0%
Pantothenic Acid 0.3 mg 3%
Choline 11.3 mg
Betaine 0.5 mg
MINERALS
Amounts Per Selected Serving %DV
Calcium 42. 2mg 4%
Iron 0.4 mg 2%
Magnesium 15.4 mg 4%
Phosphorus 44.8 mg 4%
Potassium 410 mg 12%
Sodium 88.3 mg 4%
Zinc 0.3 mg 2%
Copper 0.1 mg 3%
Manganese 0.2 mg 9%
Selenium 0.1 mcg 0%
Fluoride 4.1 mcg
Source: USDA

Carrots contain beta-carotene and alpha-carotene – two carotenoids that our bodies convert to vitamin A. Vitamin A plays a significant role in boosting vision and immune function, maintaining healthy cells, and activating carcinogen-metabolizing enzymes, among other roles.

Carrots also contain luteolin, a flavonoid phytochemical that exhibits antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anticancer effects.They are also great sources of folate, dietary fiber, and several other vitamins and minerals.

However, not everyone may get the same benefits with carrots. The veggies may cause adverse effects in some individuals.

What Are The Risks Associated With Carrots?
Excess consumption of carrots can be toxic. Carrots may interact with some medications such as acitretin (Soriatane) and isotretinoin (Accutane) for the treatment of psoriasis and acne . People on these medications may be required to limit their intake of carrots.

Some people are allergic to carrots.This may trigger swelling and breathing-related issues. Sometimes, it leads to anaphylaxis, a severe allergic shock .

Conclusion
Carrots are rich in fiber, low in calories and sugar, and offer numerous health benefits. They can boost vision and promote immunity. More importantly, they can also help in the treatment of chronic ailments.

You can include them in your diet. However, be wary of drug interactions and allergies. If you experience any symptoms, stop the intake and visit your doctor.

Can you eat raw carrots every day?

Yes, you can. The carotenoids in carrots are converted into vitamin A in the human body. A cup of cooked carrots contains five times the amount of carotenoids you should get in a day. Carrots also provide five grams of fiber, which is more than 25% of your daily need .

How many carrots should I eat per day?

The average recommended intake of five servings of various fruits and vegetables on a daily basis contains about 6 to 8 mg of carotenoids. Eating one or two to three carrots a day can be recommended.

Also, moderation is key. Consuming more than four carrots a day may cause carotenemia.

Can you eat carrot greens?

Carrot greens contain significantly higher levels of vitamin C than the root. They also contain potassium, calcium, and protein. Though they can be a little bitter if consumed raw, sautéeing the greens in a little olive oil and salt will soften the harsh flavor.

What are the benefits of eating carrots on an empty stomach?

Eating carrots on an empty stomach has many health benefits. Some believe it may detoxify the blood, though more research is warranted.

Is it good to eat carrots in the morning?

Yes. Eating carrots in the morning before a meal is good for health. It may help boost digestion. Also, the fiber in carrots can keep one satiated and prevent overeating.

 

5 Comments

  1. Reply

    I know carrots to be very good

  2. Reply

    Carrot is my best fruit

  3. Reply

    Carrot is really good

  4. Reply

    Awesome post…….nice sharing

  5. Reply

    Nice info thanks for sharing

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