Carrot health benefits and therapeutic value

Carrot or Daucus carota is a hardy plant that belongs to the Apiaceae family. Native to Europe and Asia, the carrot is one of the most cultivated vegetables in the world, but the one we are all familiar with today, the orange carrot, is the result of human experience, a selective breeding from more ancient varieties that were more bitter and fibrous.

Carrots offer many health benefits and have a high therapeutic value.

The carrot and its health benefits for the body

Often eaten for its beneficial impact on our skin, bursting with vitamins and minerals, carrot is also known for its many medicinal properties.

  • Replete with vitamins A and B9, carrot reduces age spots and has an impact on skin, rejuvenating it and helping it recover its health. It is, all in one, anti-wrinkle, protective and purifying.
  • The vitamins harbored in carrot also help our immune system to function properly and reduce exhaustion.
  • Carrot beta-carotene is a powerful antioxidant which offsets ageing of cells and neutralizes free radicals. It reinforces UV resistance, beautifies our skin tone and extends tanning.
  • Eating carrot would have protective effects against certain cancers, and it is also said that carrot corrects visual disorders.
  • For both children and adults, carrot regulates digestive tract functions in case of constipation or diarrhea. Carrot soup is the ideal meal in case of infant diarrhea.
  • Carrot poultices (fresh finely grated carrot pulp), help treat skin conditions and light burn wounds.
  • Carrot juice and leaves have diuretic properties. They are recommended against rheumatism, gout and arthritis.
  • Carrot seeds have the same appetite-enhancing, digestive, carminative and galactagogue properties as fennel and aniseed. Be careful: these aren’t recommended during pregnancy but only after.
  • Ideal beauty product: grated carrot pulp mask or daily carrot juice lotions.

Growing carrot for its benefits

  • Carrot requires full sun exposure, cool, rich and well drained soil. It really does great in light sandy soil, with moist and mild climate. Carrot can take mild frost spells in stride.
  • Watch out for excessive moisture which can lead to contamination by bacteria, rotting the carrots underground.
  • It is possible to leave a portion of your carrot harvest in the ground, covered with leaves or any other organic matter. At the very beginning of spring, all you’ll need to do is to remove this protective cover and collect the fresh roots.

  • To plant your carrots in pots, prefer short varieties (‘Marche de Paris’ or ‘Courte amelioree a forcer’) and prepare large garden boxes at least 12 inches (30 cm) deep, filled with all-purpose soil mix lightened with a little fine sand.
  • Keep an eye out for the carrot fly! These little larvae develop inside the roots and make the plants rot. And carrot also is vulnerable to downy mildew (during cool and wet summers), powdery mildew (if it’s too hot), and a gazillion more mean little bugs (worms, millipedes, weevils, etc).

Carrot in cooking for its health benefits

  • Carrot is eaten raw (grated for example), doused with dressing, or steamed, mashed, or in soup. Once cooked, carrots lose a portion of their nutritional value.
  • Choose your carrots with firm, crisp roots and fresh green leaves, which show that it has only recently been harvested. Cut the leaves off quickly to avoid losing moisture, keeping the fruit from getting soft.
  • Keep your carrots in the refrigerator in a plastic bag with holes in it up to two weeks.

Nutritional content of carrot

Raw carrot grated is great for health benefits.Raw carrot provides an average of 36 kcal / 3.5 oz (100 g) and cooked carrot about 28 kcal / 3.5 oz (100 g). It is particularly well-stocked with provitamin A, vitamins C and B9, and minerals.


Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois):
Carrot juice shared by Gracia31 under © CC0 1.0
Grated carrot shared by Schwarzenarzisse under © CC0 1.0

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