Carrots boast plenty of health benefits for kids due to their high vitamin, fiber and antioxidant content. They are not only brimming with essential nutrients, but their sweet taste and crunchy texture also make them a favorite for kids of all ages. Served raw, roasted, boiled, mashed and even juiced, organic carrots are an easy addition to any snack or meal. Here are four health benefits of carrots, plus a tasty organic carrot recipe to try at home.
4 Health Benefits Of Carrots
Strengthen The Immune System
Carrots are rich in a number of immunity-boosting vitamins and antioxidants. The most important of these is beta-carotene, the antioxidant that gives carrots their bright orange color. During digestion, beta-carotene is converted into Vitamin A – a nutrient crucial to proper immune system functioning. Vitamin A helps keep the skin and cells that line your airways, digestive and urinary tracts healthy, thereby acting as the first line of defense against harmful viruses and bacteria.
Protect Teeth & Gums
Carrots are also beneficial to teeth and gum health. Their crunchy texture helps to clean your teeth and mouth by scraping off plaque and food particles just like your toothbrush and toothpaste. Additionally, the mineral antioxidants in carrots help stimulate the gums and induce saliva production. Saliva is essential to oral health, acting as a natural disinfectant that combats bacteria.
Another health benefit of carrots is their high fiber content, which aids digestion. A diet rich in fiber is essential to help the body stay regular and maintain proper cholesterol levels. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, high-fiber foods are “good sources of nutrients and vitamins that may help reduce the risk of heart disease, certain types of cancer and obesity.”
Improve Eye Health
Carrots can also boost your eye health. Carrots contain three essential nutrients that encourage healthy eyesight: beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin. Together, these antioxidants help prevent cataracts, macular degeneration and night blindness from developing as you age.
Mikaela Reuben’s Herbed Carrot Recipe
Are you convinced of the health benefits of carrots? Now is the time to add this delicious and nutritious veggie to your diet. Organic carrots are easy to add to any meal, and just one cup provides 400% of the Vitamin A your body needs. Here is an easy-to-follow recipe for herbed carrots created by culinary nutritionist and Eminence Organics fan Mikaela Reuben.
- 2 lbs organic rainbow carrots, cut in half lengthwise if the width is bigger than an inch
- 2 tablespoons organic extra virgin olive oil
- ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon fresh organic thyme leaves, chopped fine (1oz/28grams yields = ¼ cup packed chopped)
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
- Wash the carrots very well and cut off the top end. Place on a bare baking sheet.
- Drizzle the olive oil, sea salt, pepper and thyme over the carrots. Rub them well to ensure they are evenly coated.
- Place in the preheated oven and allow to roast for 20 minutes. (Depending on the size, cook longer if bigger).
- Serve with a fresh sprinkle of thyme. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
Do your kids love carrots? Tell us how you like to incorporate them into a healthy diet. Share your favorite recipe in the comments below!