Without doubt, carrots are healthy for you! Not only are carrots easy to prepare, but they can also be prepared in a variety of ways which makes them the most widely consumed vegetables throughout the world.
They also grow easily in just about any type of soil and have a place in many different international cuisines.
Daucus carota are the scientific name for carrots. Even though it is classified as a root, some people eat the tops as well. Carrots are mostly bright orange; however, there are some less common varieties of carrots that are white, red, yellow, or purple.
Nutrition In Carrots
Carrots are healthy for you in numerous ways. They are high in beta-carotene and fiber.
They also have loads of antioxidants, which fight cancer and other cellular defects. Most varieties of carrots are high in vitamins C, A, B8, and K, iron, folate, pantothenic acid, potassium, copper, and manganese.
So how are carrots healthy for you?
Health Benefits Of Carrots
Well, they have many health benefits including:
1. Carrots Help Prevent Cardiovascular Disease
In one of the studies, the consumption of carrots resulted in the reduction of cholesterol by approximately 11% in those people who ate 7 oz of carrots daily for three weeks. Low cholesterol lowers the risk for heart disease.
In Sweden, another study, researchers found that the risk of having a heart attack can reduce by eating carrots on a regular basis.
2. Carrots Lower Blood Pressure
Carrots are high in potassium, which dilates the blood vessels. They also have coumarin that lower blood pressure, hence improving overall body circulation, leading to enhancement of the body organ’s function.
Low blood pressure means there is less stress on the heart and therefore decrease the risk of heart attacks, atherosclerosis, and stroke.
3. Carrots Enhance The Immune System
Carrots improve the body’s immune system because they are high in antibacterial and antiseptic properties. Carrots are also high in vitamin C, which stimulates white blood cells, which are an important part of the immune system.
4. Carrots Help Promote Digestion
The fiber found in the roots of the carrot helps maintain excellent digestive health. Carrots help bulk up allows the stool to pass cleanly through the colon because they are high in insoluble fiber.
The fiber also increases secretion of the stomach acid by enhancing peristalsis in the colon. Carrots are believed to be protective not only against constipation, but in preventing more serious things like colon cancer.
5. Carrots Help Prevent Cancer
Carrots reduce the risk of several cancer types, particularly lung and breast cancer because they are high in beta-carotene. A study showed that people who are more beta-carotene had reduced their chances of getting lung cancer by more than 40%.
Another study revealed that eating carrots decreases the likelihood of getting colon cancer by approximately 24%.
6. Carrots Help The Eyes
Carrot consumption is believed to decrease the age-related macular degeneration. A study showed that people who ate more beta-carotene had a 40% reduction of age-related macular degeneration.
They also seem to help prevent declining vision that occurs as a result of vitamin deficiency.
7. Carrots Help In Mouth Health
Carrots stimulate the gums and enhance saliva production; this results to fewer dental caries and few bacteria that can lead to dental caries. Carrots are also beneficial to people with bad breath.
8. Carrots Help Prevent Strokes
Researchers have shown that eating a carrot every day decreases the chances of getting a stroke by 58%. No one knows precisely why this is the case, but researchers believe it is because carrots are high in beta-carotene.
9. Carrots Are Protective In Diabetics
Carrots help regulate blood sugar, hence help regulate diabetes because they have carotenoids. They also help regulate the use of insulin and glucose in the body so that there are fewer blood sugar fluctuations in people with diabetes.
5 Healthy Ways To Eat Carrots
Since carrots are versatile vegetables, they can be consumed in several ways. You can either cook or eat them raw. Here are five ways you can incorporate carrots into your diet:
- Eat the carrot sticks raw or with a vegetable dip.
- Eat carrot soup because it retains much of the nutrients that raw carrots have and it is also a delicious way to eat carrots.
- Eat them by juicing them alone or with other vegetables. Carrots give you a healthy juice containing many phytonutrients.
- Eat them roasted in a light amount of oil to retain many of their phytonutrients. Roasted carrots also make an excellent side dish to a meal.
- Eat them in a casserole by chopping them and putting them in just about any soup or casserole.