Carrots and Carotene – Everything You Need to KnowReading time: 11 min

Carotene is an essential nutrient for healthy skin, and you should consider introducing more beta-carotene foods into your alkaline diet.

Among the many beta-carotene fruits and vegetables available, carrots are rich in nutrients. Other carotene foods include spinach, lettuce, tomatoes, sweet potatoes, broccoli, and cantaloupe.

Looking for the most carotene-rich carrot? Look for orange carrots with the most intense color! 

In our detailed blog below, you will find out everything you need to know about this crunchy alkaline staple – from the health benefits of carrots to a few mouth-watering recipes to try.

Here you can find more information on carrots, their carotene values, and their important role in an alkaline diet. 

Physical Description of Carrots

Carrots get their bright orange color from them, you guessed it,  carotene values. The name “beta-carotene” comes from the Greek word ‘’beta’’ and the Latin ‘’carota’’.

However, it is worth a mention that it is not only found in carrots but also in other colorful fruits, vegetables, and plants.

Carrots

History and Production

Carrots are a staple in many diets around the world, and for good reason. They are full of vitamins (especially vitamin K), minerals, and antioxidants that help promote healthy skin and hair, as well as overall health.

Carrots were first domesticated in East Asia more than one thousand years ago.

They were mainly used as food but also had some medicinal benefits. Today, carrots are produced all over the world and are available year-round.

However, they are most popular during winter because their color makes them visually appealing on store shelves! 

The first known evidence of carrot cultivation dates back to 3000 BC in Afghanistan and Iran. At this time, people were growing crop varieties such as maize, peanuts, beans, and pumpkins.

carrots Nutrients

It is thought that carrots were originally consumed as part of a ceremonial diet or used for medicinal purposes. 

As carrot production increased throughout the world, so too did its popularity as a food item. Carrot cultivation soon spread to Europe and North America, but it was not until the mid-19th century that commercial growers began cultivating them commercially for their edible roots alone.

Today, carrots are grown all around the world, including in Canada, China, India, Australia, Mexico, Africa, Argentina, and Chile. 

Nutrients Facts

Carrots are one of the best sources of carotenoids, which is important for your health. They help to prevent diseases like cancer and age-related eye health problems.

In fact, one cup (120 grams) of cooked carrots provides about 20 % of the recommended daily intake (RDI) for carotenoids.

Carotenes are converted into vitamin A when you eat them, and vitamin A helps protect your eyes, skin, and other organs from damage.

Carrots also contain lutein and zeaxanthin – two other antioxidants that are important for your health. Lutein helps protect your eyesight while zeaxanthin helps protect your vision against the harmful effects of ultraviolet light.

Carrots also contain potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, and other minerals. They are also a good source of vitamin B6, thiamine, and niacin.

It is worth a mention that carrots are relatively high in sugar, yet have no cholesterol or saturated fat.

carrots Nutrients

What Does Acid/Alkaline Mean?

Acid and alkaline are terms used in chemistry to describe the pH of a solution. The higher the number, the more alkaline it is. Solutions with a pH of 7 are neutral, while solutions with a pH below are more acidic.

Essentially, the pH scale refers to how acidic (low pH) or alkaline (high pH) the food is.

Acidic food can cause problems such as tooth erosion and body inflammation, while foods that are more alkaline can help improve overall health by promoting gastrointestinal balance.

Foods that fall into either of these two categories generally have labels printed on them specifying their acidity or alkalinity. 

The Problem with Being Too Acidic

Acid/alkaline diets are a type that proponents believe can help improve health. These diets emphasize eating foods that are low in acid and high in alkaline properties. The theory is that by balancing the levels of these acids and bases in the body, various problems can be improved or even prevented altogether.

In an alkaline diet, carrots can have a positive effect on your health – even if you’ve just transitioned into an alkaline diet.

Yes, carrots are slightly more acidic than some of the other foods in our journal, but they cannot cause acid reflux. 

Too much acid in your diet can have negative consequences for your health. Over time, an acidic environment can damage tooth enamel and dentin as the acids leach minerals out of the teeth. This is a grim picture indeed.

 It can also trigger problems with gingivitis, including inflammation and bleeding. In extreme cases, it may even lead to dental caries (tooth decay).

And finally, an overly acidic digestive system is linked with a higher risk of developing certain types of cancer.

How do you know when your diet is too acidic? The pH scale measures the acidity level of foods and beverages. Foods that are high on the pH scale (above 7) are more alkaline than those that are low on the pH scale (below 7).

So, how do you find foods that fall into this category?

If your pH level is out of balance, then you may need to make some changes in how you eat and live.

There are many ways to alkalinize the body without relying on pharmacological interventions. Some basic tips include:

  •  Eat plenty of fresh produce that contains magnesium, potassium, and other essential nutrients such as carotene – these foods help maintain healthy blood pressure levels as well as promote better skin health; Carrots are famous as the most carotene-rich root vegetables, and you can even opt for carrot juice. 
  • Avoid processed foods, sugary drinks, excessive alcohol consumption, (especially wine) tobacco products, and caffeine if you want to keep on the alkaline spectrum.

Ph Value of Carrots

As we’ve seen, all vegetables – including carrots – vary in their pH level due to factors like soil composition and irrigation preferences.

Carrots are a healthy option when it comes to adding some color to your diet. 

Normally speaking, leafy greens have more alkalinity than others because they contain more chlorophyll.

This means that green veggies are usually safer to eat since they tend to be slightly less acidic (which also means there’s less chance of stomach problems). 

Now, carrots are not quite alkaline – they vary between a pH of 5.55 and 7 – which puts them in the neutral category. Ideally, you should not eat carrots that fall below a pH of 6.

Carrots

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Benefits of Carrots

A common misconception is that pH levels don’t matter when it comes to health and food safety. What a misconception indeed! In fact, unsafe foods with high acidity levels can harm your body in several ways: they can cause stomach problems, damage the lining of your gut (known as gastritis), increase your risk of cancer, and decrease fertility rates.

Let’s look at several reasons why carrot consumption may be particularly beneficial for people following an alkaline diet:

  • They’re low in calories – One cup of raw carrots contains just 37 calories (1/4 of 1% of your daily calorie intake). This makes them a healthy option for people trying to lose weight or maintain their current weight loss progress.
  • They’re packed with antioxidants – Carrots contain more than 30 different antioxidants, including phytochemicals that have been shown to protect against cancer cells and lower inflammation levels throughout the body. In fact, one study found that eating three cups per day reduced inflammation markers by 67%.
  • They’re easy to digest – Carrots are highly soluble in water so they easily break down into glucose and galactose molecules once they enter the small intestine.) This means that they won’t cause bloating or gas like some other culprits on our list. As an extra perk, they are also loaded with fiber – a double whammy to keep you full and regular. 

Carrots are also marked safe for diabetes who need to keep an active watch over their blood sugar levels. It has a very low glycemic index and is a non-starch. This is good news for all keto dieters out there.

Carrot Recipes

Making changes to your diet can be tough, but it’s an important investment in your health.

One of the best ways to start is by adopting an alkaline diet.

Carrots are a great way to get your daily dose of essential nutrients while lowering your risk of heart disease and other chronic illnesses. Will Rogers was wrong: 

Some guy invented Vitamin A out of a carrot. I’ll be he can’t invent a good meal out of one.

– Will Rogers

Here are two delicious carrot recipes that will help make the transition easier:

Carrot Soup With Dill

Looking for a delicious and nutritious soup recipe? This dish is packed with fiber, vitamins A and C, iron, and of course, carotene.

Plus, it’s easy to make and it’s yummy – perfect for a cold winter day.

Carrot Soup With Dill

Ingredients:

  1. 2 carrots, peeled and chopped into small pieces
  2. 1 onion, chopped into small pieces
  3. 3 cups vegetable broth or water
  4.  1 tablespoon olive oil or butter
  5. 1 teaspoon salt (or to taste)
  6. 1/4 cup fresh dillweed leaves OR 1 teaspoon dried dillweed leaves  
  7. Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Directions:

In a large pot over medium heat, sauté the onions in the oil until they are softened. Add the carrots and vegetable broth.

Bring to a boil then reduce heat to a low simmer and cook until the vegetables are very tender (about 20 minutes).

Stir in the fresh dills if using or stir in one teaspoon of dried herbs. Season with pepper to taste before serving hot.

Roasted Carrot Salad with Honey Drizzle & Mint Dressing

This delicious salad is a perfect way to celebrate the arrival of spring! The honey and mint dressing adds a touch of sweetness and freshness, while the roasted carrots give it an earthy flavor that pairs perfectly with the other ingredients.

Best of all, this salad can be prepared in just minutes – making it ideal for on-the-go lunches or quick dinners.

Roasted Carrot Salad with Honey Drizzle

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. raw carrot, peeled and sliced into thin strips
  • 3 Tbsp olive oil divided
  • Salt & pepper to taste
  • For the Honey Drizzle:
  • 1 cup honey        
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar                
  • ¼ tsp salt              
  • Pepper to taste For Mint Dressing:            
  • ½ cup sour cream or yogurt (or Greek yogurt) whisked until smooth (Greek yogurt is alkaline-forming despite having a low pH level of 4.4-4.8)
  • 3 large sprigs of fresh mint leave chopped

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In a large bowl, toss together carrots, one tablespoon of olive oil, salt & pepper. Spread out on a baking sheet and roast for 25 minutes until slightly browned.

Meanwhile make the dressing by mixing honey, apple cider vinegar, and salt and pepper until desired consistency is achieved; set aside extra for later).

Transfer the carrots onto the serving dish; top with remaining ingredients then drizzle with honey drizzle or dressings as desired. Enjoy!

What’s Up, Doc?

Orange carrots, purple carrots, it doesn’t matter! As long as you get your dose of beta carotene, you can munch down any variation you like – as long you keep the pH in check. 

We covered everything you need to know (in a nutshell) about carrots and carotene to make it easier for you.

The transition into a low-acidic diet doesn’t have to be tough, and with all the health benefits you can unlock, be prepared to level up to a healthier, better you.  

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