Carrots are sweet and crunchy, making them a favorite in kids' snacks and a nutritious addition to many meals. They provide a good amount of fiber, and they're low in calories. They also contain lots of nutrients like potassium and Vitamin A, plus antioxidants that fight inflammation and reduce your risk for disease.
The bright orange color of carrots comes from beta-carotene, which the body converts to Vitamin A. A diet rich in beta-carotene can protect your eyesight, and it may even help slow the progression of macular degeneration. Carrots also are high in luteolin, which research suggests could reduce your risk for lung cancer.
Other vitamins and minerals found in carrots include calcium, which strengthens bones, and vitamin K, which helps prevent blood clots. Carrots are a great source of soluble fiber, which helps keep you regular and fights chronic disease. They are also a good source of potassium, which helps regulate blood pressure and may help lower your risk for stroke and heart disease.
You can enjoy carrots raw, dipped in hummus or guacamole, or added to salads and stews. But cooking them makes them easier to digest and absorb their nutrients. Aim to eat about two to three cups of veggies per day, and include carrots in your mix.