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Carrot

Where does carrot come from?

carrot

The plant is said to have been found in what is now Afghanistan 5,000 years ago. There are still several wild colonies with red or brown roots there. Thus starts a lengthy trip through the ages that would lead the carrot to the Middle East, Asia, Africa, and Europe, where it has been grown since the 18th century, according to human investigations. There were kinds with white, yellow, red, green, brown, and black flesh or skin available at the time, but no orange carrots. It's worth noting that in Canada, all wild carrots have white root.
The orange carrot, in reality, is the result of human meddling. These are the Dutch, who in the 16th century mixed types with red flesh and white flesh in order to express their devotion to the House of Orange, a Protestant principality of France, and finally acquired a root of a lovely vivid orange.
This newcomer will quickly replace all of the others. Breeders will focus only on it to generate the numerous current types, with round or conical roots, and more or less wide and long according on the applications desired. It continues to dominate the market, yet we are beginning to see brown carrots in shops.
However, the greatest variety of hues may be found among amateur gardeners and a few specialist producers. These are antique kinds with a flavor that is occasionally superb, sweetened to perfection with a dash of bitterness on occasion.
Despite its introduction in North America about 1620, the carrot did not assume its position in human cuisine until the end of World War I. Previously, it was mostly utilized as cow fodder and as a horse treat. Researchers' discovery of carotene and its advantages in 1910 probably helped to publicize it.
Except in tropical places where the environment does not suit its placid demeanor, the carrot is grown almost everywhere on the earth.

What does the carrot contain?

This root vegetable is unusually high in carotenoids, or provitamins A, as seen by its orange hue.
Cerotenoids are substances that are concentrated around the skin of the vegetable: to get the advantages, wash the carrot properly and be pleased with removing only a thin peel.
The carrot's energy contribution remains minimal. It is mostly because of its carbs.
This vegetable has a high concentration of carotenoids (provitamin A, which our bodies convert into vitamin A): beta-carotene and alpha-carotene. A 100g portion of carrot provides more than half of an adult's daily need of vitamin A.
The core also includes B vitamins, vitamin K, and a little amount of vitamin C.
It contains a surprising quantity of minerals, including potassium, calcium, magnesium, and iron.
Its fibers, which are especially plentiful, are mostly made of pectin and cellulose.
nutritional value per 100g

Name of constituentsUnityAverage content
EnergyKcal41
waterg88.29
Proteing0.93
Carbohydratesg9.58
sugarg4.74
Starchg1.43
Dietary fiberg2.44
Lipidsg0.24
Saturated FA(fat acid)g0.037
Monounsaturated FAg0.014
Polyunsaturated FAsg0.117
Sodiummg69
Magnesiummg12
Phosphorusmg35
Potassiummg320
Calciummg33
Manganesemg0.143
Total ironmg0.3
Coppermg0.045
Zincmg0.24
Seleniumµg0.57
Iodineµg0
Retinolµg835
Beta caroteneµg8285
Vitamin Dµg0
Vitamin E activity (alpha-tocopherol)mg0.67
Vitamin Cmg5.9
Vitamin B1 or Thiaminemg0.066
Vitamin B2 or Riboflavinmg0.058
Vitamin B3 or PP or Niacinmg1.183
Vitamin B5 or Pantothenic acidmg0.273
Vitamin B6 or Pyridoxinemg0.138
Vitamin B9 or Total Folateµg19
Vitamin B12 or Cobalaminsµg0
Vitamin K µg 13.2

The carrot's best feature : beta-carotene.

carrot

Carrots have the most beta-carotene, which gives them their lovely orange color:
What is known as beta-carotene is actually pro-vitamin A, a chemical that the body may convert into vitamin A following consumption.
Vitamin A, on the other hand, is beneficial to one's health since it is a potent antioxidant that fights free radicals.
It also aids in the prevention of cell degeneration.
It then aids in the prevention of skin aging as well as the development of some malignancies (be careful, however, beta-carotene supplementation is associated with an increased risk of lung cancer in smokers and ex-smokers).
Beta-arotene also aids in the development of a beautiful complexion and the improvement of night vision. For the first point, we recommend using it before the start of the summer to help the skin prepare for tanning.

What is the best way to acquire the most beta-carotene from a carrot?

The daily recommended amount of beta-carotene is 4,800 micrograms. However, 100 g of raw carrots has 11,500 calories while 100 g of cooked carrots contains 10,000 calories. As a result, 50 g of carrot per day is adequate.
However, keep in mind that the majority of the vitamins are found right under the skin of the carrot. As a result, we'd rather scratch it than peel it. Furthermore, organic carrots will be chosen to avoid pesticide residues (51.7 percent of them have residues).
Furthermore, in order to maximize beta-carotene absorption, the carrot must be consumed with a fatty component. Favor avocado (or avocado oil, which increases absorption rate by 15), olives, or seeds like squash, flax (crushed), or sunflower seeds for this.
If vitamin A is beneficial for health, vitamin A-based dietary supplements have not been established in this area. It appears that they are even linked to an increased risk of death. So, yes, vitamin A in carrot form; nay, vitamin A in pill form.

Minerals in Carrots:

Carrots are also a good source of minerals. As a result, they contain unusual amounts of:
Calcium (26 mg/100g): Calcium is necessary for strong bones and, in particular, prevents osteoporosis.
Phosphorus (20.4 mg/100g): provides energy to the body and aids in the building of the skeleton.
Magnesium (11.9 mg/100g), which helps to avoid cardiovascular diseases and premenstrual syndrome symptoms.
Cooking causes a minor loss of minerals, on the range of 10 to 15%.
Everyone knows that carrots are the best vegetable to eat with rice if you have diarrhea:
Be cautious; it is therefore essential to consume it prepared.
You may also rehydrate by drinking the broth.
Raw carrots, on the other hand, are a good source of fiber, which helps with digestion:
It thus becomes a fantastic slimming buddy, thanks to its low calorie content.
It does, in fact, have just 153 kcal per 100 grams!
However, it retains a surprising amount of sweetness for a vegetable, particularly when ripe and/or cooked.

Nutritional benefits ​​of carrots:

carrot

Vitamins, antioxidant chemicals, and fibre found in fruits and vegetables all play an important part in maintaining good health.
A high intake of vegetables and fruits has been demonstrated in several studies to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, and other chronic illnesses.
The National Health Nutrition Program suggests eating at least 5 servings (of at least 80 g) of fruits and vegetables each day, and taking advantage of seasonal variability. Although carrots are available all year, they are sweeter in May, June, and July.
Almost a piece of a vegetable and carrot contribution is: – two or three tablespoons of raw or cooked carrots, or – two or three tablespoons of raw or cooked carrots, or
A big carrot, entire
Cooking significantly decreases the carrot's vitamin C content, but just a minor portion of its provitamin A: 10 to 15% at most.

Carrots' health advantages for cardiovascular diseases

The carrot's dark hue stems from its many pigments. They would aid in the prevention of a variety of ailments, including cardiovascular disease and cancer.
Carrot eating has been found in two animal experiments to affect specific parameters that support cardiovascular health. As a result, eating carrots (or juice, to a lesser amount) boosts antioxidant capacity and vitamin E levels in the blood, while also decreasing cholesterol and triglycerides in the liver and blood.

Carrots' health advantages for Cancer 

Carrots have been shown to protect against lung cancer when consumed. According to a study of more than 120,000 women, those who ate 2 to 4 servings of carrots per week had a 40% reduced risk of lung cancer than those who didn't. The danger was reduced by 60% when five or more servings were consumed.
Furthermore, an observational research discovered that persons who ate 2 or more servings of carrots or spinach per week had a 44% lower risk of breast cancer than those who did not.

Carrots' health advantages for Cataracts 

Two observational studies indicated a lower frequency of cataracts in men and women who had higher levels of alpha and beta-carotene in their blood. Those that ingested the highest lutein and zeaxanthin had the same effects. The carrot contains all of these chemicals.

The health benefits of carrots' antioxidant power

Beta-carotene, lutein, and zeaxanthin are the major carotenoids contained in carrots (raw, cooked, or juice). Carotenoids are substances that have antioxidant characteristics, which means they may destroy free radicals in the body, among other things. Consumption of foods high in carotenoids has been associated to a decreased risk of developing a variety of illnesses, including cancer, cardiovascular disease, and aging-related disorders like cataracts. Several carotenoids are also vitamin A precursors, meaning that the body transforms them into vitamin A as needed.
Furthermore, carotenoids would protect against cancer since they prevent oxidative damage to DNA in diets containing them. When DNA is damaged, the chance of cancer increases. Carotenoids levels in the blood of people with cystic fibrosis are also lower than in the general population. A few studies have revealed that people with cystic fibrosis who take beta-carotene supplements had higher plasma antioxidant capacity. However, no research has been conducted to far on the impact of carrot diet on carotenoid levels in patients with the illness.

The health benefits of carrots' Dietary fiber

According to the authors, consuming fiber and carotenoids at the same time, both of which are found in carrots, would boost the preventive benefit of this food. Indeed, it has been demonstrated that some forms of fiber, particularly soluble fiber, can decrease cholesterol and prevent atherosclerosis in both animals and people. During the trial, carrot juice (which is deficient in fiber) had a lower effect on blood lipids than carrot ingestion. This behavior might be explained in part by the synergistic impact of the two substances.

Should we be concerned about carrots' glycemic index?

Although cooked carrots have a high glycemic index, their glycemic load is minimal due to the moderate quantity of carbohydrate in a typical meal. As a result, eating it raw or cooked does not prevent you from losing weight. Furthermore, the nutritional advantages are just too vital to be overlooked. Raw carrots have a sweeter flavor than cooked carrots.
Carrots, even when cooked, do not cause blood sugar levels to spike, contrary to common perception.
The mistake dated from the early 1980s. Rather than just evaluating the presence of slow and fast sugars in our meals, some scientists are interested in the increase in blood glucose levels, or blood sugar after food consumption. David Jenkins at the University of Toronto is thus creating a glycemic index to quantify the magnitude of this peak. It is now simply a matter of establishing it for the various food groups. But how do you go about it?
It will be essential to assess the development of blood sugar at repeated intervals, within two hours after meal administration, on a significant number of persons in order to ascertain this. This is the source of the issue. Because the results from research with a limited number of participants will serve as a standard for years to come. Figures from which are not always trustworthy, especially for cooked carrots, whose index reaches 92, which is near to the maximum, namely the value 100 of glucose. We already knew at the time that a high-glycemic-index diet, when ingested in excess, might have major health consequences.
In reality, an excessively high blood sugar level puts the body in risk, so it responds by secreting insulin to bring it down. This is a particularly dangerous process in diabetes, because either insulin is absent or the body's response to it is inadequate. Furthermore, even if insulin is generated properly, blood sugar rises have the long-term consequence of encouraging glucose storage in the form of fatty acids, hence promoting overweight and obesity. Obesity is the most important risk factor for type 2 diabetes.
There are strong reasons to be careful of foods having a high glycemic index, and to advise using caution while eating them. Except… the carrot has a very low glycemic index while raw, and a high glycemic index when cooked.

Variations in the glycemic index related to the nature of the meal and its preparation account for the fact that there are two values. To begin with, there are distinctions between carbohydrates: the more our enzymes have to work to digest them, reducing the sugar molecules in the stomach, the lower our GI. This is the well-known distinction between simple sugars (those with a high index) and complex sugars.
The type of starch, a complex carbohydrate found in fruits and vegetables, also has a role. If it includes a lot of amylose (as in many legumes), the meal is digested slowly, however if it has a lot of amylopectin (as in potatoes or extremely ripe fruits), it is absorbed more quickly. Furthermore, if the diet is high in fiber (which hampers the function of enzymes), the index is lower in both circumstances. Finally, cooking is really crucial.
Enzymes are made easier to work with by making the starch gelatinous. This is why the glycemic index number increases when you compare raw and cooked carrots, or al dente (40) and well-cooked (50) pasta. This is also why commercial goods (sandwich bread, cereals, ready-made meals) with many treatments always have high GIs, despite the fact that these items are generally abundant in lipids that have a lower IG. So, even if the carrots are cooked, it is preferable to pick them!

How to choose the right carrot?

carrot

Brown carrots contain double the amount of beta-carotene as orange carrots, whereas yellow carrots have very little and white carrots have none. The orange carrot's flavor is concealed by volatile chemicals, giving the appearance that the brown carrot is sweeter. The quantity of total carbohydrate in these carrots, on the other hand, does not change much from one type to the next. White carrots have a low vitamin C content, compared to orange or brown carrots, which are thought to have the greatest.
People on a weight-loss program might try chewing 1 or 2 carrots to fight off momentary hunger. It's also a fantastic method to get over rabies if you've recently stopped smoking.
The carrot will last a few days in the refrigerator crisper, up to ten days at most. It will last longer if the toppers are stored separately. It may be frozen after it has been cooked or blanched and preserved for several months.

How do you cook carrots?

carrot

Carrots' sweet flavor enables for the creation of meals that are both delicious and unique in the kitchen. It may be consumed raw, boiled, grated, or even as a juice. Carrots may also be used to make sweets that are both healthful and unexpected for the most ambitious chefs.
The carrot has the benefit of being versatile in terms of preparation. Here are some suggestions:
*Steamed or stewed and seasoned in butter;
*Glazed in a mixture of broth, sugar or honey, and butter; *Steamed or stewed and seasoned in butter;
*Glazed in a mixture of broth, sugar or honey, and butter;
*Mashed' is a term used to describe something that has been mashed On its own or in combination with turnips, potatoes, or other root vegetables;
*As a soup, in a soup, or in the form of a soup. Young carrots should be cooked in a vegetable or chicken broth with an onion. Toss everything into a blender. By adding plain yogurt, you may give it a creamier texture while also balancing out the sweetness of the carrot. Add a bit of spice or ginger, lemon zest, or a squeeze of orange juice for an exotic twist
*After being cut into sticks, drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with thyme and a pinch of sage, they were roasted in the oven;
Cooked and prepared in the Roman way, with a cumin, salt, oil, and old wine sauce.

Carrots can also be consumed as a juice, either alone or in combination with other vegetables, fruits, or condiments:
In the summer, three or four carrots with a few mint leaves;
Fall: two carrots, a tomato, and a celery stalk
In the winter, two carrots and a squeezed orange
Because the juice contains only about 10% of the carrot's valuable fibers, we'll save the cake (pulp) to use in cakes, cookies, puddings, or muffins.
In sorbet, ice cream, or granita, for example… Because of its sweet flavor, carrots are easily included into cake, muffin, and cake recipes. Furthermore, the well-known carrot cake is well-liked all across the world.

The tops of the plants (leaves and stems) are also consumed. The freshest may be used in salads, while the others can be used in vegetable broths. They're utilized in the renowned Bas-du-Fleuve salted herbs in Quebec.

Contraindications and allergies to carrot

Carrots have minimal contraindications to their ingestion. It is, however, one among the foods that might trigger an allergic reaction, but this is uncommon. It is therefore prudent to exercise caution and seek medical advice if in doubt.
Carrots are a food that has been linked to oral allergy syndrome. This condition is caused by an allergic response to proteins found in a variety of fruits, vegetables, and nuts. It is characterized by symptoms in the mouth and throat in certain patients who have allergies to environmental pollens. Hay fever is usually often the precursor to this disease. As a result, some persons with ragweed allergies may experience an immunological reaction if they eat the carrot raw (heating normally breaks down the allergenic proteins). Itching and burning sensations in the mouth, lips, and throat affect these persons. Symptoms normally emerge for a few minutes after eating or touching the problematic food and then dissipate.
This response is not significant in the absence of additional symptoms, and carrot eating does not need to be avoided on a regular basis. However, you should see an allergist to figure out what's causing your sensitivities to plant foods. The latter will be able to determine whether further measures are required.