Could a carrot a day keep the cardiologist away? It’s quite possible. Because heart disease is the number one killer in the United States, we obviously need to look at every potentially beneficial solution—but particularly the natural and preventative ones. While a healthy diet and regular exercise can keep your cardiovascular system fit, specific foods may have a greater preventative impact than others. Carrots are one of these foods.
Carrots Shown to Provide Amazing Benefits for the Heart in Another Study
A study from the Netherlands illustrated just how beneficial carrots can be in the prevention of cardiovascular disease. Published in the British Journal of Nutrition, the study analyzed different fruits and vegetables based on their color, which ultimately indicates the presence of certain nutrient compounds.
They separated produce into four different groups: green, white, red/purple, and orange/yellow. Interestingly, those in the orange/yellow group had the most anti-cardiovascular disease benefits. In particular, those vegetables with deep orange hues (like carrots) showed the greatest benefit.
As a matter of fact, carrots were found to be the single most risk-reducing fruit or vegetable tested.
Participants in the study were tracked for 10 years, during which time their diet was analyzed for consumption of these foods and their risk reduction. Those who ate the fewest amount of carrots saw the least risk-reduction, though they still experienced a reduced risk of heart disease. Those who ate the most carrots saw a reduction by about 32%!
Carrots are rich in antioxidants that are believed to be the muscle in cardiovascular disease prevention. As reported by WHFoods.com:
“The many different kinds of carrot antioxidants are most likely to work together and provide us with cardiovascular benefits that we could not obtain from any of these antioxidants alone if they were split apart and consumed individually, in isolation from each other. The synergistic effect of carrot antioxidants is a great example of a whole food and its uniqueness as a source of nourishment.”
In other words, the evidence points to obtaining these antioxidant benefits from the whole, natural foods rather than trying to break them down into supplements, for instance.
In addition, phytonutrients like falcarinol and falcarindiol are believed to contribute to carrots’ heart healthy benefits. These potent compounds have major anti-inflammatory benefits, are believed to prevent the clumping of red blood cells, and have even been shown to reduce the risk of cancerous ‘full scale tumors‘ from developing by 1/3 in some research.