With an increase in distribution especially in this season, you may have wondered what benefits are embedded in the consumption of carrots.
As trivial as it could appear, Daucus Carota; carrots, have been proven by experts in the field of nutrition science to possess numerous nutritional health benefits.
Recent studies have revealed that carrot is a root vegetable with flavonoids, polyacetylenes, vitamins and minerals. It is undeniable that carrot has worldwide distribution. Carrots were first used for medical purposes and now, gradually being used as food.
The colours of carrot root flesh may be white, yellow, orange, red purple or very dark purple. The first cultivated carrots were yellow and purple fleshed cultivars but today, orange carrots are widely known. They were developed in the 15th and 16th centuries in central Europe.
According to the Journal of Food and Nutrition Sciences; 2014, carrots are rich in carotenoids, polyphenols and vitamins which act as anti-oxidants, anticarcinogens and immuno enhancers. The study found that carrot could be very potent in the control of diabetes, cholesterol level and cardio-vascular diseases. Also, anti-hypertensive,hepatoprotective, renoprotective and wound healing benefits of carrots were identified in the study.
It was revealed that carotenoids widely distributed in orange carrots are potent anti-oxidant which can neutralise the effects of free radicals, even as they contribute to decreasing the risk of cancer.
The study also said that extracts of carrots which contain different amounts of falcarinol, falcarindiol, and falcarindol 3 acetate had significant effects on both normal and cancer cell proliferation.
Eating carrots rich in beta-carotene may restore vision. This is because they are one of the richest sources of pro vitamin A and a high intake of carotenoids has been linked with a significant decrease in post-menopausal breast cancer.
Research has also proven that smokers who eat carrots more than once in a week have a lower risk of lung cancer, as a beta-carotene rich diet may also protect against prostate cancer
In addition, a significant association between vitamin-A rich carotenoids and diabetes status was demonstrated in the study. According to these investigators, higher blood glucose levels, as well as higher fasting levels of insulin were observed in study participants with a lower level of carotenoid. Carotenoid levels also decreased as the severity of glucose intolerance increased. These findings proved that carrots and vitamin A-rich carotenoids might help diabetic patients to manage their condition.
According to another study on, Nutrition facts and health benefits, carrots are rich in biotin and this plays an important role in fat and protein metabolism.
“Vitamin K1 also known as phylloquinone is embedded in carrots and is important for blood coagulation and can promote bone health.
The study also highlighted the anti-hypertensive effect of carrots. Carrots also contain potassium which is an essential mineral that is important for blood pressure control.