Carrots are like the “Jack of all Trades”- evidence, huh? Well, see how these yellow to orangey bits are in your meal, whether that meal is your breakfast, lunch, or dinner- and oh, have you heard that these veggies also has its way of getting into your snack? Well, now you already do.
Aligned with that, maybe you’re intrigued how does this ‘intrusion’ within a various selection of food preparation had been possible- are carrots that old that they’ve been ‘experimented’ to be an ingredient for a whole wide spectrum of delicacies? Or basically, are they that nutritious that such is managed to be a part of almost every meal possible?
Not sure about it?
Well, the answer goes both ways. Carrots had been cultivated for a sufficiently long time ago as evident in its perpetuation among diverse food recipes. At the same time, it contains a sea of health benefits- that you’ll even most probably understand why your mother is so eager in having your carrots all consumed and not just setting it aside from the plate… memories.
Anyway, before digging into the list of why carrots are actually good for your various possible health concerns, let’s have first these top 3 Panlasang Pinoy facts regarding this orange friend of ours!
For the record: Heaviest x Biggest- 19 by 19
We know that there are different weight and sizes for carrots- but do you know that the heaviest carrots weight up to 19 pounds and the longest measures up to 19 feet?
Yay, that height’s already a tripled up for the most of us!
On eating carrots: 1:20 for rabbits to humans!
Oh, what does this implies? Basically, it says that although we could see, starting from books to films, how rabbits seem to always have carrots on their hands, the shocking fact is that overconsuming carrots aren’t really that good for them!
Why? That’s because as the first line suggests, 1 carrot for them equates to 20 carrots for us! Imagine that… no, you can’t even imagine, right? Yay.
Carrots on the throne next to potatoes
If in humans, we have celebrities and politicians deemed as the most popular, in veggies they also have this kind of hierarchy- but that hierarchy, of course, is still due to us (on our rate of consumption, specifically) since veggies can’t obviously compete against each other.
For that, veggies have carrots ranked next to potatoes. There may be no different kind of “fried” version of carrots alike potatoes but with the former being combined with pastries, such as bread and cake, then there’s nothing to be confused about anymore.
After the groundbreaking list of trivia, here goes the most awaited part! List of health benefits that carrots have in store for us!
Carrots for Cancer Prevention
a. Due to Falcarinol
Generally, due to Falcarinol- a protective-pesticide naturally produced to combat possible fungal diseases, carrots are identified as a cancer-preventing veggie by default. That is because based on clinical studies, the presence of Falcarinol had been shown to deduce the possibility of acquiring cancer by around 67%.
b. Due to Carotenoids
Also, since carrots have high levels of a certain variation of high-in-antioxidants, free radical-eliminating carotenoids, consuming carrots is said to be capable of fighting off diseases such as cancer.
Vs. Prostate Cancer
Although it is not 100% guaranteed yet, maybe it would not hurt to fill your diet with carrots if ever that battling with prostate cancer isn’t your thing (well, whose thing is it, anyway?). This ‘claim’ is based on some initial studies showing a relation in between prostate cancer and a highly particular kind of carotenoids which could be found in high levels within carrots- yet as stated, it is not verified that the two are actually causal in terms.
Vs. Lung Cancer
The significant amounts of beta-carotene and a specific kind of carotenoids produced commonly only by carrots are recognized as capable of reducing lung cancer, with the former causing a reduction impact even up until 20%.
Hence, regular intake of carrots in recommended processing and amount is highly suggested especially to those that are most probable to developing lung cancer such as smokers.
Vs. Colorectal Cancer
Based on studies involving humans which is conducted in Japan- as a result gathered from how carrots- mainly the nutrients in significant levels which could be found in it, it has been concluded that this vegetable is a remarkable food to eat against colorectal or simply, colon cancer.
Carrots for Glowing and Youthful Skin
Retinoic acid, a substance found in high levels within carrots, is identified as one of the main necessities of the body in the task of maintaining healthy skin. Hence, if one of the problems you face include aging of the skin, then you can surely grab some carrots on the shelf to help you out.
In addition to that, carrots can also be used as your protective buddy against the ever-increasing skin-harming rays of the sun and versus free radicals that could be found both on our environment or are released as side products from our body processes.
In addition to that, if you’re really invested into reaping this benefit, then you can maximize the use of carrots not only by including it in your diet but also, through applying it directly on your face. A concoction of this vegetable is reported not only to make your skin vibrant, but as well as protect it from dryness and for some cases, a shield against the formation of acne.
In addition to the retinoic acid, high levels of Vitamin A in carrots are also responsible for the skin benefits such as delaying wrinkle formation, preventing pigmentation and blemishes, alongside maintaining just fair skin.
Carrots for Boosting Your Body Defense
Either used on the surface or not, carrots are considered as a good support to the immune system- when used in cuts, it prevents the possible acquiring of infection as it protects the wounded part at the same time it increases the rate of wound healing; when eaten, can provide the needed aid of the body in helping your recover from simple yet are very hassle diseases such as cold and flu.
Carrots for Detoxification
Because of our polluted (beyond vision) environment and the complexity of the foods we consume not only in regular but as well as in large amounts, we, on the side, obtain toxins which are needed to be flushed out of the body.
Carrots with its high levels of Vitamin A can aid with the said function. Also, the fact that this vegetable is fiber-rich means that it is also a help for the colon cleansing.
Carrots- an Anti-Stroke Veggie; vs Heart Disease and Hypertension
One amongst the top diseases which have caused death among humanity, worldwide- are hypertension and its partner, stroke.
So how can a piece of carrot help?
Based on research conducted by the Harvard University, it has been found that regularly including carrots in your everyday weekly meal- minimum five times, could lead to a reduction of 67% regarding the possibility of acquiring stroke. Thanks to beta-carotene being involved in a highly particular neurological processing directly linked to the said disease!
On the other hand, carrots due to its carotenoids. beta and alpha-carotene, together with lutein coming in significant levels, the possibility of heart disease and high blood pressure is also, “significantly” decreased.
Also, due to carrots being fiber-rich and high in potassium levels, sodium intake (and the actual level of it needed by the body) is pulled down- further increasing an individual’s protection against having hypertension and the much terrifying one, heart disease.
Now you know what’s with carrots- now since Panlasang Pinoy don’t want anyone among the audience not getting the most that they deserve, here we are bounded to answer that one last question: What (actually) are the recommended ways of preparation of carrots that the nutrients stated above could be acquired in the greatest levels as possible?
• Shredded for salads, stews, pastries and baked goods (e.g. cake, bread), wraps.
• Juiced for… salad juice/shakes of course.
• Mashed and boiled for meals prepared especially for kids.
• Steamed carrots for snacks.
May healthy living be within your control my friend: Here at Panlasang Pinoy, one of our aims is to expand the horizons on how YOU can be live a life that’s long and worry-free!
For this article’s food for thought, we have:
“If health is wealth, carrots are indeed a highly considerable investment, then!”
Healthy Living. (2019). 10 Benefits of Carrots: The Crunchy Powerfood | Care2 Healthy Living. [online] Available at: https://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-benefits-of-carrots.html [Accessed 13 Mar. 2019].
Natalie Olsen, A. (2019). Carrots: Benefits, nutrition, diet, and risks. [online] Medical News Today. Available at: https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/270191.php [Accessed 13 Mar. 2019].
Anon, (2019). [online] Available at: https://guidedoc.com/health-benefits-of-carrots-superfood-improving-eyesight [Accessed 13 Mar. 2019].