The carrot is a root vegetable, usually orange in color, though purple, red, black , white, and yellow varieties exist.
Carrots are mostly used as food. They can be consumed raw or in the form of juices and various sweet and salty dishes.
Carrots are a domesticated form of the wild carrot, Daucus carota, native to Europe and southwestern Asia.
Over 35 million tons of carrots are produced each year. China is the biggest manufacturer of carrots in the world.
Carrots were originally white or purple. Then a yellow carrot appeared through mutation and the familiar orange carrot was bred from it.
Carrots are used in traditional medicine to reduce flatulence, eliminate intestinal parasites and to treat tonsillitis and constipation.
There are more than 100 species of carrots.
Falcarindiol is a compound responsible for the bitter taste of carrots. This substance shows antifungal properties (can be used against fungal diseases).
The name “carrot” comes from the Greek word “karoton.” The beta-carotene that is found in carrots was actually named for the carrot itself. The word carrot is first recorded in English in a 1538 book of herbs.
Carrot is biennial plant which means that it lives two years.
Edible part of carrot is the root. It reaches maturity 70 to 100 days after planting.
The modern day orange carrot wasn’t cultivated until Dutch growers in the late 16th century took mutant strains of the purple carrot and gradually developed them into the sweet, plump, orange variety we have today.
European settlers introduced the carrot to colonial America in the 17th century.
It require cool to moderate temperatures and are not grown in summer in the warmer regions.
Carrots are grown from seed and can take up to four months (120 days) to mature, but most cultivars mature within 70 to 80 days under the right conditions.
The carrot plant produces a rosette of 8–12 leaves above ground and a fleshy conical taproot below ground. The plant produces small (2 mm) flowers which are white, red or purple in color.
Carrots bloom from June to August. Inflorescence, called umbel, consists of miniature white flowers. Umbels become concave and look like bird's nests when they are mature and ready to release seed.
The foliage of the plant can reach a height of 150 cm (59.1 in) when in flower.
The edible root can grow to between 5 and 50 cm (2.0–20 in) long and reach 5 cm (2.0 in) in diameter. The root can grow to between 5 and 50 cm (2.0–20 in) long and reach 5 cm (2.0 in) in diameter.
Carrots are the second most popular type of vegetable after potatoes.
The biggest carrot recorded is more than 8.6 kilograms (19 pounds) and the longest is over 5.7 meters (19 feet)!
Carrot has green, feathery leaves that are located above the ground.
Carrots are often thought of as the ultimate health food.
There are 41 calories in 100 grams (3.5 ounces) of carrots.
Carrots are 88% water, 4.7% sugar, 0.9% protein, 2.8% dietary fiber, 1% ash and 0.2% fat.
All varieties of carrots are divided in two major categories: eastern and western. Eastern types originate from Asia. They are yellow or purple in color and have branched root. Western types originate from Netherlands. They are orange-colored and can be found in various sizes and shapes (short, long, narrow, conical…).
The health benefits of carrots include reduced cholesterol, lower risk of heart attacks, prevention of certain cancers, improved vision, and reduced signs of premature aging. Furthermore, carrots have the ability to improve the skin, boost the immune system, improve digestion, protect cardiovascular health, detoxify the body, and boost oral health in a variety of ways. They also provide a well-rounded influx of vitamins and minerals.
Color of carrot depends on variety. Carrots can be yellow, white, orange, red or purple in color.
Most of the benefits of carrots can be attributed to their beta-carotene and fiber content. These root vegetables are also a good source of antioxidants. Furthermore, they are rich in vitamin A, C, K, and B8, as well as pantothenic acid, folate, potassium, iron, copper, and manganese.
The high level of beta-carotene in carrots acts as an antioxidant to cell damage done to the body through regular metabolism. It help slows down the aging of cells.
Orange color of carrots originates from pigment known as beta carotene. This substance was first discovered in carrots, hence the name "carotene".
Our bodies turn beta-carotene into vitamin A. Vitamin A is important for good health, especially for your eyes.
Beta carotene from carrots turns into vitamin A in the human body. This vitamin is essential for normal eyesight (lack of vitamin A may result in night blindness).
Purple carrots contain purple pigments called anthocyanins, which act as anti-oxidants that protect the body.
Carrot seeds are so small that about 2000 seeds can fit in a teaspoon.
It’s all in the crunch! Carrots clean your teeth and mouth. They scrape off plaque and food particles just like toothbrushes or toothpaste. Carrots stimulate gums and trigger a lot of saliva, which, being alkaline, balances out the acid-forming, cavity-forming bacteria. The minerals in carrots prevent tooth damage.
Too many carrots in diet may lead to orange skin especially on the palms and soles. This condition is known as carotenosis.
Size and shape of carrots depend on the variety. Longest ever recorded carrot had 17 feet in length, while the heaviest carrot had almost 19 pounds of weight. Baby carrots are not originally miniature in size. They are produced from slender carrots by cutting into small and equal parts.
Carrots are a good source of fiber, which is good for the health of your digestive system.
Carrots have a higher natural sugar content than all other vegetables with the exception of beets.
Carrots are widely used in many cuisines, especially in the preparation of salads, and carrot salads are a tradition in many regional cuisines.
The longest carrot measures 6.245 m (20 ft 5.86 in) and was grown by Joe Atherton (UK), as verified at the UK National Giant Vegetables Championship, in Malvern, UK, on 23 September 2016.
The heaviest carrot weighs 10.17 kg (22.44 lb) and was grown by Christopher Qualley of Otsego, Minnesota, USA, as verified on 9 September 2017.
Rabbits love to eat carrots, but they shouldn’t eat too many. A rabbit eating a single carrot is like us eating over 20. Carrots are good for rabbit teeth and don’t have artificial sugar, but even too many natural sugars can cause digestive problems and diabetes.
Unlike other vegetables, carrots are rich in sugar. They also have high level of fibers, vitamin A, E, C and vitamins of the B group. Carrots also posses numerous valuable minerals.
The belief that eating carrots improves night vision is a myth put forward by the British in World War II to mislead the enemy about their military capabilities.