Carrots are probably the most versatile meals that Mom Nature has to supply. From stews to salads, roasts to juices, this bright-hued veggie might be a part of practically any meal. The perfect half about them, although, is that carrots are excessive in vitamins that help your well being from head to toe — they usually can style nice.
Learn on for all of the carrot dietary data you’ll want to know and useful ideas for purchasing and making ready this root vegetable.
Carrot diet information
Serving dimension: 1 giant carrot (7.25 to eight.5 inches lengthy)
- 30 energy
- 7g carbohydrates
- <1g protein
- <1g complete fats
- 0g saturated fats
- 2g fiber (7.1% Each day Worth)
- 3g sugar
- 50 mg sodium
- 230mg potassium 4.9% DV)
- 9mg magnesium (2.1% DV)
- 4mg vitamin C (4.4% DV)
- 14 µg folate (3.5% DV)
- 601 µg vitamin A, RAE (66.8% DV)
- .48 mg vitamin E (2% DV)
- 9.5 µg vitamin Ok (12% DV)
With simply 30 energy and fewer than one gram every of fats and protein per carrot, the veggie is principally product of water and carbohydrates. “Whereas they do include easy sugars, in addition they include starch, a great quantity of fiber, and loads of phytonutrients,” says Lauren O’Connor, M.S., R.D.N., a gut-health specialist and proprietor of Nutri Savvy Well being. “They’re wealthy in antioxidants and include all kinds of nutritional vitamins and minerals, together with nutritional vitamins A, C and Ok, potassium, calcium and phosphorus. What actually stands out about carrots is its vitamin A content material — necessary for eye-health, immunity, development and reproductive well being.”
Well being advantages
They don’t seem to be only a low-calorie snack. Making carrots part of your weight loss program can:
- Maintain eyesight sharp: Vitamin A protects ocular well being. “A carrot’s pure orange hue is an indication of its plentiful beta-carotene, a precursor to vitamin A,” says O’Connor. It’s additionally a supply of different eye-healthy carotenoids together with lutein and zeaxanthin.
- Promote digestion: The fiber fills you up and contributes to good digestion and absorption. “Along with preventing free radicals and their position in eye well being, carotenoids might have a prebiotic impact and contribute to a wholesome intestine barrier,” notes O’Connor.
- Shield tooth: “On a structural stage, chewing uncooked carrots might assist break down meals particles and plaque, which contribute to dental carries,” says O’Connor. “Consider these carrots as a pure toothbrush. Carrots additionally include sure bone-building minerals, specifically calcium and phosphorus, which can assist with the energy and integrity of your tooth.” Plus, the vitamin A in carrots is necessary for the formation of keratin — a key protein in tooth enamel.
- Management blood sugar: ”Carrots are a non-starchy vegetable, a great supply of fiber, and have a low glycemic worth,” says O’Connor. “These are properties that make them useful for managing blood sugar ranges.” You possibly can improve this profit by pairing carrots with meals which might be excessive in protein (akin to hard-boiled eggs or a hearty black bean dip). “Each protein and soluble fiber can gradual the absorption of glucose into the bloodstream – stopping blood sugar spikes,” explains O’Connor.
Opposed results and allergic reactions
Thankfully, carrot allergic reactions are uncommon. That stated, “some individuals with pollen allergic reactions might expertise tingling of the lips, irritation within the mouth or throat and different oral allergy signs when consuming uncooked carrots,” says O’Connor. (Cooking carrots modifications the proteins in order that they shouldn’t trigger these reactions.) Uncooked carrots may also trigger difficulties for individuals with digestive points like IBS, Crohn’s illness, gastroesophageal reflux illness (GERD) and gastroparesis, in line with O’Connor. “Uncooked veggies are tougher to digest and should worsen signs of belly ache, bloating, and nausea,” she says. However once more, cooking is the answer right here: It makes the carrots softer and simpler for the physique to interrupt down.
They’re all nutritious decisions, however their nutrient composition will differ barely. Latest research counsel that the flavonoids in black or purple carrots have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties. Plus, some analysis suggests the polyphenols, flavonoids and carotenoids in black carrots might play a task in reducing your danger of power illness. Apparently, information reveals that crimson carrots additionally include giant quantities of lycopene, a nutrient linked with a diminished danger of coronary heart illness and a few cancers.
Meals prep FAQ
Are you able to eat carrots day by day?
Typically talking, it’s protected (and a good suggestion!) to eat as many carrots as you’d like. Sure, there are uncommon instances the place individuals have consumed a lot beta carotene (from meals like carrots, squash, candy potatoes, cantaloupe, oranges and pumpkins) that their pores and skin developed an orange hue (a situation known as carotenemia). Nonetheless, you would want to eat a minimum of 10 carrots day by day for just a few weeks for that to occur, in line with Cleveland Clinic. (Plus, since carrots include a lot water and fiber, you’d very doubtless really feel too full to eat that many!) If you happen to’re frightened that carrots will trigger weight achieve, you possibly can relaxation assured understanding they gained’t. Whereas any meals can result in extra kilos should you eat it in extra, it is fairly tough to overdo it on produce — carrots included!
What must you search for when shopping for carrots?
Whereas pre-shredded and child carrots are nutritious, handy choices, your greatest wager is to purchase complete carrots. “You’ll get higher total taste should you chop or shred it your self,” says O’Connor. “For the most effective depth of taste, select a bunch with their inexperienced tops hooked up — this means freshness and the more energizing, the extra flavorful. If you’re on the lookout for sweeter, go together with a smaller selection. Test to ensure your carrots aren’t cracked, cut up, and that they don’t present any indicators of dryness.” If you get residence, O’Connor recommends putting your carrots in an unsealed bag or wrapped in a humid paper towel after which storing them within the crisper drawer of your fridge. “They need to last as long as two weeks,” she says.
Ought to I peel carrots?
The peels include about half of the antioxidants (often called phenolic compounds) in carrots, so you must attempt washing them completely as a substitute of peeling. Nonetheless, should you’re shredding carrots to eat later, eradicating the outer layer might assist preserve colour and improve shelf life.
How must you prepare dinner carrots?
Top-of-the-line issues about carrots is their versatility. They’re particularly tasty when roasted, cooked in a stew and even sautéed in a stir fry. Boiling carrots might scale back their dietary content material, however freezing them will preserve most of it. You can even take pleasure in them uncooked, shredded in salads, or in smoothies.
Kaitlyn Phoenix is a senior editor within the Hearst Well being Newsroom, the place she stories, writes and edits research-backed well being content material for Good Housekeeping, Prevention and Girl’s Day. She has greater than 10 years of expertise speaking to high medical professionals and poring over research to determine the science of how our our bodies work. Past that, Kaitlyn turns what she learns into partaking and easy-to-read tales about medical circumstances, diet, train, sleep and psychological well being. She additionally holds a B.S. in journal journalism from Syracuse College.
Diet Lab Director
Stefani (she/her) is a registered dietitian, a NASM-certified private coach and the director of the Good Housekeeping Institute Diet Lab, the place she handles all nutrition-related content material, testing and analysis. She holds a bachelor’s diploma in dietary sciences from Pennsylvania State College and a grasp’s diploma in medical diet from NYU. She can be Good Housekeeping’s on-staff health and train professional. Stefani is devoted to offering readers with evidence-based content material to encourage knowledgeable meals decisions and wholesome residing. She is an avid CrossFitter and a passionate residence prepare dinner who loves spending time together with her large match Greek household.