I read many articles regarding cancer support, repeatedly I have noted that long-term remission patients include a daily intake of carrot juice. Rather than, or alongside, green juice. So simple and yet worth taking this into consideration to support our immune health, possible chronic disease and general well-being.
So, what are the benefits of consuming carrots? Many studies show that beta-carotene (a precursor to active Vitamin A) is crucial for improving immunity, protecting skin and eye health, and fighting free radical damage that can cause chronic diseases, such as cancer and heart disease. Carrots get their orange colour from antioxidants called carotenoids, that help to defend the body from free radical damage, harmful bacteria, viruses and inflammation.
Some people avoid carrots because they believe they are high in sugar and will raise blood glucose, however, the good out ways the bad – one cup of raw carrots contains only 10 grams of carbohydrate, but 4 grams of fibre. The fibre helps slow down the release of sugars, in the form of glucose, into the bloodstream. Carrot juice is slightly higher in carbohydrates than raw carrots, but a more concentrated source of vitamin A, C, B6, K and potassium.
The antioxidants with immune-enhancing effects include vitamin C, beta-carotene, lycopene, lutein, zeaxanthin and polyphenols. Carrots are one of the highest natural sources of carotenoid phytochemicals and beta-carotene, that can help fight cancer by stopping DNA damage, levels of inflammation and cell mutation.
Health Benefits include
- Protects eye health
Beta carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin considerably boost eye health by helping to maintain good eyesight and night vision, without beta-carotene, various forms of eye disorders can occur — including macular degeneration, cataracts and even blindness. Lutein and zeaxanthin, both reduce the risk of age-related vision loss.
- Lower risk of heart disease
Eating carrots can help decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease. Studies show that drinking carrot juice benefits heart health by lowering oxidative stress and improves the body’s defence against various forms of cardiovascular disease. High plasma levels of alpha- and beta-carotene are associated with a lower risk of atherosclerosis, due to the high antioxidant and high fibre content that carrots contain. They help to lower cholesterol and boost bile production, which increases the body’s ability to digest fat.
Carrots are a good source of both soluble and insoluble fibre. This helps your digestive system to properly absorb nutrition from your food, plus directly impacts the good cholesterol levels in your body. Fibre can help to remove LDL cholesterol from the walls of arteries and blood vessels. Potassium is beneficial for maintaining healthy blood pressure.
- Lower risk of cancer and its re-occurrence
Consuming high levels of carotenoids from fruits and vegetables can be protective to cancer recurrence. Studies show that these antioxidants in carrots may fight leukaemia cells and reduce the risk of prostate, ovarian and breast cancers.
I recommend only organic carrots. Remember when you make carrot juice, you are consuming a high concentrate so if toxins are present, you will also be ingesting a high level of these chemicals which will detract from the carrot juice benefits.
Enjoy the humble carrot (raw, cooked or juiced) on a daily basis!
For further nutritional advice and information contact Suzanne Garaty
Cancer studies references: