Can carrots actually make you see better in the dark, or was this brilliant marketing ploy that still stands to this day? Is it better to eat carrots raw or cook them to absorb the most nutrients? We talk all things carrots and take you on an explorative journey to help you learn more about these multi-coloured vegetables through the podcast or read the key takeaways below.
Carrots were originally purple in colour but through years of cultivation and an old folk tale of William the Orange, a Dutch prince, we have carrots of orange colour and many others, including red, yellow, and white. The most telling sign of how popular carrots were in those ancient times come from Ancient Egypt, where numerous carrots were placed in the tombs of dead Pharaohs. They also told tales of the carrot harvest and processing through drawings and can be found in hieroglyph paintings.
We also talk through some fun facts about carrots, including, the Guinness Book of World Records longest carrot measured over 6 metres in length and did you know that the darker the colour of the carrot, the sweeter the taste.
In this episode, you’ll learn more about Carrots and become an overnight expert, with the ability to grow your own and incorporate this wonderful vegetable into your daily life. Allowing you to reap the benefits of these colourful plants.
- Cultivated for over 5000 years, its original use was as a medicinal plant. In its wild state, the plant has a tiny bitter root with no broad appeal. Human cultivation has made it more versatile and palatable.
- Archaeobotanists using DNA analysis have found Roman-made pills recovered from a 130 BCE shipwreck that appear to contain carrot.
- Around 950 AD a cookbook out of Baghdad had more the 600 recipes that included red, orange, yellow and white carrots.
Nutrition & Medicinal
- Low levels of Vitamin A can lead individuals to experience night blindness, which is a condition that can sometimes be treated by eating carrots or other foods rich in vitamin A or carotenoids.
- Carrots are very high in beta carotene, which is the antioxidant that your body transforms into Vitamin A. According to multiple sources, your absorption is better (up to 6 times) if the carrots are cooked. For an extra hit of beta carotene, try purple carrots.
- While heating can often damage phytonutrients in vegetables, the beta-carotene as found in carrots has been shown to be surprisingly heat-stable.
- Carrots are said to pair exceptionally well with butter, ginger, lemon, maple syrup, orange, parsley, and sugar.
- Carrots are best planted from seed rather than seedlings as they don’t transplant well. This is what is known as “direct sowing”.
- Carrots have many companion plants that can protect them from pests and stimulate their growth. They include Chives, Rosemary, Leeks, Legumes, Onions, and Radishes.
- Absorption of Carrots
- Fill a glass half full of water and add a few drops of food colouring.
- Cut the end tip-off of a carrot and place the carrot into the water.
- Put the carrot in the glass of water and place it near a sunny window.
- After a few days, place the carrot on a cutting board and cut the carrot in half. You will now be able to see how the carrot absorbs water from the bottom to the top, traveling up towards the leafy top.
Full Transcript of Podcast about Carrots