Carrots: nutritional value and medicinal uses

Mcooker: best recipes About healthy eating

The value of carrotsCarrots are of great importance in nutrition, being an important source of carbohydrates, biologically active substances, mineral compounds and other valuable components.

The acidity of carrots is low. In the total amount of organic acids, the main place belongs to malic, followed by citric and oxalic. Carbohydrates are represented by sugars, starch, fiber, pectins, hemicelluloses. The sugar content of root crops varies widely and depends on the variety and growing conditions. Sugars are represented mainly by sucrose (about 50% of the total content), glucose and fructose. Most of the sugars are found in the crust; there are much less of them in the core. Fodder carrots are poorer in sugars than table varieties. There is little starch in carrots (about 0.1%), its grains are located in the cells of the pulp of the root crop. There is no starch in the core. The pectin substances of carrots do not gel, they are contained both in the pulp and in the core.

Roots contain quite a lot of fiber, which, as we have already indicated, not only activates intestinal motility (thanks to which it is very useful for constipation), but also helps to eliminate cholesterol from the body.

Nitrogenous substances are represented by proteins, amino acids and other compounds, however, proteins occupy the most important place. Carrot proteins are readily soluble in the bulk and therefore well absorbed in the body. In terms of their calorie content and digestibility of nutrients, carrots are higher than other vegetables (except for potatoes). So, the digestibility of dry matter of root crops is 79.3%, carbohydrates - 81.8, fat - 93.6, nitrogenous substances - 61%.

Carrots are a multivitamin plant, but they play an important role only as a valuable source of carotene. In the human body (mainly in the liver and small intestine), in the presence of fat, carotene is converted into vitamin A. Vitamin A increases resistance to infectious diseases, plays an essential role in the process of vision, being a part of the optic purpura of the retina. Insufficient content of this substance in the human body causes first night or night blindness (hemeralopia), and then can lead to complete loss of vision. Vitamin A is especially necessary for pregnant and lactating women, as well as children, as it promotes the growth and development of the body. It is badly needed by people whose professions are associated with eye strain (transport drivers, typesetters, watchmakers, typists, microscopists, etc.).

The nutritional value of carrots
Photo Elena Tim

Carotene and vitamin A have a beneficial effect on diseases of the thyroid gland, liver and kidney stones, various skin diseases, frostbite, burns, and in the treatment of purulent wounds. Carotene also has an independent physiological effect. The structural elements of the carotene molecule take part in chemical processes in the retina. Carotene also has a certain effect on the secretion of gastric juice, first causing it to decrease and then increase, the enzymatic activity of the juice increases.

Carrot root crops contain not only β-carotene (which is usually called simply carotene in popular literature), carotenoids also contain carotenes, lycopene, phytofluen and a number of other structurally similar compounds, but the specific contents of β-carotene are predominant (60- 90% of the amount of carotenoids). There are very few carotenoids in the root crops of white varieties of carrots; in blood-red varieties, lycopene occupies a predominant place.The content of carotene in carrots varies in a very wide range - from 1 to 24 mg per 100 g of raw mass of root crops. Our observations have shown that carrots grown on reclaimed peat soils contain significantly more carotene than mineral ones. Carotene retains well in cooking if it contains a sufficient amount of fat. Therefore, such dishes as, for example, stewed carrots, are characterized by a rather high content of this important compound.

Juice obtained from high quality table carrots is of great dietary and medicinal value. The technology of its industrial production was developed by a group of Belarusian researchers (DK Shapiro, LB Kaler, NI Mantsivodo, KG Petrik). 100 g of juice contains 3-4 mg of D-carotene, which provides the daily requirement of an adult. Carotene in carrot cells is located in plastids, it does not dissolve in water, therefore the juice obtained by direct pressing of crushed root crops is very poor in carotene. That is why industrially produced canned juice is a very finely ground root vegetable pulp, mixed with sugar syrup and subjected to a special processing (homogenization) to make the product tender and fluid. By the way, tomato, apricot and other juices with pulp, obtained from raw materials rich in carotene, are also prepared in a similar way.

Carrots are poor in ascorbic acid and cannot be of practical value as a source in human nutrition. The content of other vitamins, such as thiamine, riboflavin, pyridoxine (vitamin B6), is also low. Roots are richer in nicotinic acid and vitamin E. For example, carrots contain about 4 times more vitamin E than beets and 10 times more than cucumbers, but inferior to leeks, parsley and sweet peppers. The amount of niacin in carrots is also high compared to other vegetables. There are relatively few flavonoids in root crops (22–60 mg / 100 g fr wt). They contain flavones - luteolin, luteolin-7-glucoside and apigenin; flavonols - quercetin and kaempferol-3, diglucoside. Phospholipids, lecithin and sterols are also found in root vegetables.

Inositol, which is found in carrots in significant quantities (48 mg / 100 g fr wt), has a preventive and therapeutic effect in atherosclerosis, as it exhibits the ability to regulate the metabolism of fats and lipids in the body (lipotropic effect).

Among the elements of the mineral composition, a rather high content of potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, chlorine should be noted. Significant amounts of magnesium compounds were found in root crops (38 mg / 100 g fr wt). According to this indicator, carrots surpass potatoes, white cabbage, onions, cucumbers, tomatoes, radishes, second only to beets and lettuce. Magnesium promotes the elimination of cholesterol from the body, has a vasodilating effect, relaxes vascular spasms, activates intestinal motility, and has a choleretic effect. Numerous trace elements (aluminum, boron, vanadium, iron, iodine, cobalt, copper, manganese, zinc, etc.) were also found in root crops. Noteworthy is the relatively high iodine content (5 μg / 100 g fr wt).

There are various forms of therapeutic use of carrots. It is recommended for constipation, diseases of the liver, kidneys, cardiovascular system. For chronic constipation and hemorrhoids, carrots have a gentle but reliable laxative effect. Carrot juice, both fresh and canned, is very useful, especially in children's practice. It increases the body's resistance to colds, promotes the growth and development of the child. A rich source of carotene, carrot juice has been shown to be beneficial in the treatment of myocardial infarction. Fresh and processed carrots are recommended for pregnant and lactating women.Due to the high iodine content, it is also advised to use it with a reduced thyroid function.

The nutritional value of carrots
Photo Elena_Kamch

In the diet of persons whose profession is associated with a high load on vision, carrots and carrot dishes should be systematically included.

Carrot juice is useful as an adjunct remedy for conjunctivitis, keratitis, blepharitis, hemeralopia (night blindness), retinal fatigue.

In folk medicine, carrot juice is used for exhaustion and anemia, it is also considered useful for coughs, tonsillitis, stomatitis, urolithiasis (promotes the elimination of sand and stones), however, with the latter, preference is given to wild carrot seeds, which are taken in powder form (1 g each 3-4 times a day) or infusion (1 tablespoon of crushed seeds is poured with a glass of boiling water, the vessel is wrapped in a blanket and kept until completely cooled. Take 1 / 2-1 glass 2-3 times a day).

Carrot seeds contain substances that have a therapeutic effect in angina pectoris and chronic coronary insufficiency. Carrot seed extract tablets are marketed by the pharmaceutical industry under the name Daucarin. Compounds with active antimicrobial, anti-inflammatory and wound-healing effects have been found in carrots. This property is used in traditional medicine in the treatment of burns, long-term healing of purulent wounds and ulcers. Freshly grated carrots are applied to sore spots or washed with freshly obtained carrot juice. You can also use juice lotions. In this case, not only healing is accelerated, but a distinct analgesic effect is manifested. However, there are also contraindications to the use of carrots. The use of carrots (inside) is contraindicated in case of exacerbation of peptic ulcer disease, inflammatory processes of the small and large intestine (enteritis, colitis). Carrots are also used in cosmetics. For dry skin, masks of finely grated root vegetables with egg yolk are recommended.

V.P. Perednev Fruits and vegetables in human nutrition


 Carrots baked in mint-coconut sauce Carrots baked in mint-coconut sauce
 Dried carrots Dried carrots
 Spicy carrots (lean recipe) Spicy carrots (lean recipe)
 Korean carrot Korean carrot
 Korean carrot Korean carrots "Our way"
 Pickled carrots Pickled carrots
 Carrots for roasting mackerel in the airfryer Carrots for roasting mackerel in the airfryer
 Baked carrots with honey-lemon sauce and goat cheese Baked carrots with honey-lemon sauce and goat cheese
 "Carrot" from blanched carrots
 Korean carrots Korean carrots
 Carrots in mustard oil Carrots in mustard oil
 Marinated carrots "under the Korean" Marinated carrots "under the Korean"

Parsley: nutritional value and medicinal uses   The nutritional and medicinal value of pepper

All recipes

© Mcooker: Best Recipes.

map of site

We advise you to read:

Selection and operation of bread makers