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Carrots - Better Cooked Or Raw?

By Blaine F Johnston

Some vegetables are believed better eaten raw because the contents of important substances are still complete. Now, the question is: are carrots the same? Are they more nutritious when eaten raw?

A study done in 2002 showed that the level of beta-carotene in carrots increases when they are cooked. Beta-carotene is a pigment found in vegetables which gives them red, orange, or yellow colors. It is one of antioxidant substances called carotenoids. It has an important role in helping reproduction, regulating immune system and vision quality, and growing bone.

Raw carrots have tough cellular walls which make our body able to convert less than 25% of beta-carotene into vitamin A. Cooking process dissolves cellulose-thickened cellular walls and free up nutrients by breaking down the cell membranes. It shows that they are different with other vegetables, since we better consume them cooked.

Further, the way you cook also determines the content of their nutrition. Various cooking techniques you usually do influences the amount of nutrition, including polyphenols, ascorbic acid, and carotenoids. A study showed that boiling and steaming process preserves antioxidants, especially carotenoid, than frying.

A new study done by Dr. Kristen Brands also gives us a brighter view. To increase carrots' anti-cancer properties by 25%, we better boil them first before slicing. They contain one quarter more of anti-cancer compound falcarinol than the ones chopped first before being boiled. Falcarinol can help reduce cancer risk up to 30%, as a study done by Dr. Brandt proved.

Besides deciding to enjoy raw or cooked carrots, choosing the fresh ones can also determine the nutrition. To get the best-quality, you must choose the ones with a smooth and firm surface. You can also purchase carrots with the most orange look since it means that they contain the highest beta-carotene.

Purchase the well-shaped ones with bright green tops. The carrots are old if the tops are shriveled. Put them in a plastic bag and store them in the refrigerator's vegetable bin. When going to cook them, remember that most of their goodness is located in the skin. You will be better to cook them with the skin if you want to get maximum benefits.

The author of this article loves cooking. The quality of the food is also influenced by clean rooms and clean equipment. Please visit his website on http://discountvacuumcleaners.org/, which reviews and lists the best sharp vacuum cleaners you may need for keeping your home clean.

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