Carrots might a favourite for bunnies, but these vegetables serve many more purposes than just being pet food. In fact, carrots are among the healthiest foods that you can have. They’re high in antioxidants, vitamins and fiber. These can serve to decrease the risk of developing heart disease, cancer, and type 2 diabetes.
It’s also great to satisfy your junk food cravings because of its nice crunch and sweet taste, without containing the calories of junk food. On the next pages, you will find 10 more health benefits of carrots that make them healthy and delicious. Read on quickly!
1. Beta Carotene
One of the most well-known benefits of carrots is that they are very rich in beta carotene. This powerful antioxidant has many health benefits. The body converts beta carotene into vitamin A, which helps maintain healthy skin.
Studies have also shown that beta carotene protects against toxins that lead to lung cancer. So much so, in fact, that ex-smokers who consume beta carotene on a daily basis have been found to decrease their risk of both stomach and lung cancer. It’s amazing to think that such a tasty snack can help prevent such a terrible disease!
Carrots are quite rich in potassium, which is very important to the body for multiple reasons. First of all, potassium promotes a healthy blood pressure, cardiovascular health, bone strength, and muscle strength.
People who have a deficiency in potassium can experience fatigue, weakness and constipation. Also, potassium works in partnership with sodium to balance fluid levels. This reduces high blood pressure and keeps your kidneys healthy. We tend to get a lot more sodium than we need, however, because it’s used a lot in large amounts in processed foods. The potassium that’s present in carrots can help restore that balance, which is healthier for your kidneys and your body overall.
3. Dental Health
You might think that sweet snacks are bad for your teeth, and most of the time you would be right, but carrots are one of very few sweet foods that you can eat without having to worry about you dental costs skyrocketing. First of all, just chowing down these crunchy treats scrapes away plaque buildup.
Moreover, eating carrots stimulates saliva production, which helps keep the bacteria in your mouth in check, and their alkalizing capacity can balance the pH in your mouth, which is important to sustain healthy teeth.
The body needs all kinds of minerals, enzymes, vitamins and fibre to power the process of digestion. And how can you get these things? The answer is actually quite simple: carrots. Carrots have equal amounts of soluble and insoluble fibre, which help push food through the digestive system.
And we’ve already talked about beta carotene, which converts into vitamin A in the body. This vitamin boosts the health of lymphocytes, which fight off food-borne pathogens that can cause disease and illness. Finally, carrots contain plenty of calcium and potassium, which may indirectly prevent gastric ulcers by promoting the health of the muscles that move food through your digestive system.
5. Alkaline Elements
Your body benefits greatly from maintaining a beneficial pH level. That’s why we need both alkaline and acid foods to maintain a healthy balance. However, our diets tend to have too much acidic and too little alkaline foods.
For a healthy diet, about 80 percent of your food should consist of alkaline foods, of which carrot is most definitely one. Now, it’s not dangerous if you don’t manage to achieve this, as your body usually adjusts the Ph value of your blood by excreting excess acid in your urine. However, if you want to put less stress on your body, having more alkalizing foods is a simple way to accomplish that.
We understand you might not have an idea what phytonutrients are. But these nutrients actually have a host of great health benefits. Phytonutrients are naturally occurring plant chemicals that are present in carrots, among other foods.
One of these phytonutrients is called falcarinol. This phytonutrient is thought to reduce the risk of colon cancer and promote overall colon health. As a matter of fact, the different types of phytonutrients can decrease your risk of all types of cancer. Pro tip: the benefits of these phytonutrients seem to be greater when the carrots are cooked.
There are two compounds in carrots that are vital to increasing the speed at which wounds heal: vitamin C and beta carotene. Beta carotene, besides its other great health benefits, is also known to reduce inflammation, which allows the skin to heal faster.
Vitamin C is associated with a healthy immune system and the production of collagen, which is a critical component of skin. If you get a wound somewhere, just add some extra carrots to your diet and chances are it will heal more quickly.
8. Eyes, Hair, Nails and Skin
Remember those phytonutrients we talked about earlier? Well, they aren’t just useful for preventing colon cancer. These nutrients are also vital to your hair, nails, eyes and skin. This is because phytonutrients deliver certain ingredients that the body needs to build new cells.
This renewal of cells happens all the time, but ensuring that you have enough of these ingredients will make sure that the new cells are healthy and have a lengthier lifespan. This will ensure clear eyes, strong nails and glowing skin.
Antioxidants are praised to be one of the most important and healthiest nutrients you can take. Carrots are rich in these as well, especially in a particular antioxidant group called carotenoids.
These antioxidants are used to help regulate blood sugar and, as such, can reduce your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Study results about this topic vary, but in all studies the risk reduction was found to be in the range of 15 to 22 percent.
We’ve already stated how fibre can aid your digestion, but it’s great for other things, too. The soluble fibre in carrots binds to the bad LDL cholesterol and allows our bodies to get rid of it.
As a result, we lower our risk of heart disease and we are less prone to blood clots. The insoluble fibre has its benefits, too: it helps prevent constipation and intestinal blockages, thus reducing the risk of problems like hemorrhoids and even colorectal cancer.