Friday, January 17, 2014

Health Benefits of Carrots

Carrot halwa is one of the carrot recipes

The health benefits of carrots are many.  It is no surprise then many use carrots as a cooking ingredient, almost on a daily basis.  This vegetable is used in a variety of food, ranging from sweet dishes to curries, sambars to salads.  One of the mouth-watering sweet dishes made from carrot is carrot halwa.  The link to the recipe of carrot halwa is given at the end of this post.   From the taste and the health views, carrots get a top score.  Here is a quick overview of the health benefits of carrots:

Rich source of Vitamin A: It is necessary, among others, for eye health and strengthening the immune system.

Types of Vitamin A: The two types are:

1.  Preformed Vitamin A: Available in meat
2.  Provitamin A: Found in vegetables and fruits as beta-carotene.

Which food has Vitamin A?  Many vegetables and fruits have Vitamin A in its natural form.

The three vegetables that have the highest amount of Vitamin A, in the ascending order, are:

1.  Sweet potato
2.  Spinach
3.  Carrot

Other vegetables and fruits that have Vitamin A include broccoli, capsicum, pumpkin, cantaloupe and raw mangoes.

Carrot also has fiber, which helps in digestion.  This vegetable also has, among others, Vitamin C.

Cardio Vascular Disease:  Many research studies have proved that a strong link exists between consuming much fruits and vegetables, including carrots, and cardio vascular health.

Carrot juice is said to be good for the heart

A research study says that, “Drinking carrot juice may protect the cardiovascular system by increasing total antioxidant status…1

Cancer:  Research studies have shown that the antioxidants, including, beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, caffeic acid and cyanidins, in carrots, might work as an anti-cancer agent.  It may prevent lung, prostate and other cancers.

Blood sugar levels:  Carrots may help regulate blood sugar levels.  Thanks again to the antioxidants in carrots.

TIP: Eat baby carrots, as a snack, if you feel hungry between meals.  Such carrots could be a great substitute, for example, for snacks made from deep frying in oil.  Do remember to thoroughly wash the carrots before you eat them.

Here is the link for info on how to prepare carrot halwa:


Dietary Supplement Fact Sheet: Vitamin A,
Antioxidants and Cancer Prevention,
1Drinking carrot juice increases total antioxidant status and decreases lipid peroxidation in adults, Nutrition Journal,