Carrot is a root vegetable and the edible part grows underground. It contains about 87% water. Carrots grow in many different colors including orange, purple, red and even white. The most common color is orange which we find in our local supermarkets.
Carrot contains huge amount of vitamin A in the form of beta carotene. Beta carotene is converted into Vitamin A in our body. It is also an anti-oxidant which slow down aging process. Many studies have also shown that beta-carotene consumption reduce the risk of having lung cancer, colon cancer and breast cancer.
As for vitamin A, people who do not eat enough vitamin A has difficulty in seeing in dim light, or what we call night blindness. To know how serious your night blindness is, you walk from a well lit room to a dark room, if you take longer to adjust to the change in light, you may want to get more Vitamin A.
Carrots are also good for the skin. If you have dry rough skin, with the anti-aging agent in carrot, your skin will glow. I know some girls who actually apply carrot juice on their faces to get rid of pigmentation and blemishes.
Eating too many carrots or drinking too much carrot juice may cause your skin, mostly the hands, to turn yellow or orange temporarily. Carotenemia is the medical term for increased blood levels of the pigment carotene. Do not be fooled that this is a sign of bad health. It signals excessive intake of carotene. No worry, normally, it is harmless. Two possible causes of why your skin turns orange – either your body is unable to process all the carotene properly in the carrot juice you are drinking , or your liver is toxic. Either way, the color shows up in your skin. The skin is one of four organs of elimination in your body. Some toxins will come out there. After all, skin is the largest organ in the body.
Reduce your intake and you will see it going away. Though carrot juice is good, you should take it in moderation. You should not take more than 8 to 10 oz of carrot juice a day. Some people believe that it is the toxin which have been clogging the liver. Some people also actually eat carrots to prepare themselves to sun exposure. No, carrot does not preserve from sunburns.
People eating carrot for different reasons. Some believe that it helps in treating impotence, long term cough, and diarrhea. Some women, who have just given birth, drink carrot juice to enhance the quality of breast milk. Carrot also has anti-carcinogen properties which helps prevent cancer.
Tips To Buy, Store and Eat Carrots:
- Go for carrot with deeper orange color. Dark orange color indicates more carotenoids (vitamin A) that the carrot may contain.
- The shorter the carrot, the sweeter it is. So, if you like it sweet, choose short carrot; if you do not like it sweet, go for the longer one. Also, avoid carrots that are soft or crooked.
- Store the carrots in refrigerator. If left unwrapped at room temperature, carrot will lose its crispness and sweetness. If stored properly, carrots can be kept longer than many other vegetables. To preserve its freshness, wrap them in paper towel or plastic bag and store them in the coolest part of the refrigerator to minimize the moisture they lose.
- Many people buy carrots with tops to ensure they are fresh. If you do so too, you should cut it off because it causes the carrot to wilt prematurely as they pull moisture from the roots.
- Baby carrot is a great snack food to nibble. Baby carrots are actually normally carrot that have been peeled and cut into uniform cylinders.
- Cut the carrot lengthwise to preserve the nutrients. If you cut it in small rounds shape, it lose its nutrient in water when you cook them.
- If you want to extract the juice from carrot, you do not have to peel the carrots. Just make sure you scrub it clean under running water before putting it into juicer machine. The skin contains much nutrients.
- Add shredded carrot to your salad.
- If you like soy milk, you can do like what I do – combine freshly squeezed carrot juice with soy milk (and bananas if you dare) to make a nutrient-dense breakfast shake!
Carrot has great nutrition and it can be enjoyed all year round. Add it to your diet to have a better health. Few of my female friends really like carrot juice. It is sweet and refreshing. Try it yourself next time and I am sure you will like it too.
Category: Other Fitness/Sports Articles
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