Perhaps autumn is the best time to talk about carrot juice. What it is useful — a fact well-known, but what exactly is the benefit? Maybe we should lie down on this drink while there are fresh roots?
I propose to learn more about the properties of carrot juice, its use in folk medicine and, as usual, contraindications to use, which should be taken into account.
What is the use of carrot juice
Probably the first thing that comes to mind when it comes to nutrients in carrots is carotene. In the human body, it is converted into vitamin A, which is involved in the normalization of metabolic processes, has a powerful antioxidant and oncoprotective effect, helps to maintain good vision, affects human reproductive function. And it is also called “beauty vitamin” – it is responsible for the condition of the skin, hair and nails.
For maximum absorption by the body of nutrients contained in carrot juice, fats are necessary, so it is desirable to use it with cream, sour cream, olive or sunflower oil. Often for the treatment and prevention of diseases, it is used in a mixture with other vegetable or fruit juices.
Gardeners who are fond of experiments with colorful roots, it should be borne in mind that the maximum content of carotene is noted in carrots of bright orange color. White-fruited varieties of carotene practically do not contain, in purple its amount can vary. But the purple root vegetables are rich in anthocyanins, which increases anti-aging, anti-inflammatory, Onco-protective action of this vegetable. It is also believed that purple carrots improve vision as well as blueberries and contribute to the prevention of eye diseases.
Well, if you go back to carotene, it is useful to know that an adult is enough for one medium-sized orange root to satisfy the daily need of the body for vitamin A. in this case, for medicinal purposes, it is allowed to use 0.5-1.5 liters of juice per day (some sources call the maximum permissible dose of 3 liters) – but for a limited time: excess carotene will not benefit!
Of course, carotene is not the only useful substance in the composition of carrots. Vitamins, mineral salts, essential oils, fiber – its chemical composition allows folk medicine to consider carrots a universal healer and use for the prevention and treatment of many ailments.
Carrot juice, easily absorbed by the body, is used for colds, coughs, bronchitis, sore throat; it strengthens the immune system and increases the body’s resistance to diseases; improves the digestive system; regulates the nervous system; helps to restore vision; has a beneficial effect on the heart and blood vessels; protects the body from cancer.
Carrot juice is very useful for skin, teeth, hair and nails; with regular use, you can notice its rejuvenating effect. This drink is indispensable in the diet, including obesity: it normalizes metabolism and prevents the deposition of fat. It is recommended to include in the diet of the elderly, pregnant and lactating women, young children-it slows down the aging process, stimulates lactation, accelerates the growth and development of babies.
Externally, carrot juice is used for rinsing with angina, hoarseness of the voice, stomatitis and instilling in the nose with a cold; it is rubbed into the scalp to improve hair growth (for such a procedure, it is mixed with lemon juice or onion in a ratio of 1:1); with carrots, rejuvenating face masks are made.
How to cook carrot juice
To get the maximum benefit from this miracle drink, you should definitely use it freshly prepared — within 20-30 minutes after pressing. Canned juice is more a food product than a remedy: it is, of course, also useful, but you should not expect a pronounced healing effect from it.
Probably, it is clear that the roots selected for juice preparation should be healthy and strong — there is nothing to extract from flabby carrots, and all kinds of rot not only worsen the taste of the drink, but also can harm health.
It is advisable not to cut the outer layer of the root-it contains a lot of vitamins. But it is possible to do so only with fresh young carrots, which are thoroughly washed in running water. If cleaning is necessary, try to remove the skin as thinly as possible or just scrape the roots with a sharp knife.
Peeled carrots should be used immediately, it should not be stored. If there is no juicer, grate the roots on a grater and squeeze the juice from the resulting mass through a cotton cloth or folded in several layers of cheesecloth. It is recommended to cook and drink juice no later than 20 minutes before meals.
Do not add salt, sugar, spices. You can put a spoonful of honey, if you want to sweeten the drink. Useful additive, as already mentioned, will serve as cream, sour cream or vegetable oil.
If you have not previously taken carrot juice, do not immediately drink it in glasses-start with 1-2 tablespoons and gradually bring the volume to the recommended dose. Single (1 reception) portion should not be more than 0.5-1 Cup. For medicinal purposes, carrot juice is drunk in courses of 3-4 weeks, then you need to take a break for 10-15 days (you can alternate different juices, depending on the indications).
Contraindications to the use of carrot juice
If carrot juice is so good, why can’t you drink it all the time? And all whether this drink goes in good? Unfortunately, good things also happen a lot, and even useful products have contraindications.
Excessive (in too high doses or prolonged) consumption of carrots and carrot juice causes yellowing of the skin (primarily it becomes noticeable on the palms and feet). Of course, this is rather a cosmetic defect, and such a phenomenon passes after stopping the intake of juice quickly enough. But if you do not pay attention to it, you can wait for more serious consequences.
As already mentioned, the carotene contained in carrots is converted in the body into vitamin A. If it comes in normal quantities and is fully absorbed, it is for the good. If the process is broken, a variety of problems are possible. So, with a lack of fat, vitamin A is simply excreted from the body, it is not absorbed; with a deficiency of vitamin E, it is quickly destroyed, and if the diet is poor in proteins, the body does not synthesize a specific protein that binds vitamin A — and it becomes toxic. Thus, it is not enough just to drink healthy juice — it is necessary to take care that the daily diet is balanced.
Excess amount of vitamin accumulates in fatty tissues, liver, kidneys. Of course, excess vitamin A (hypervitaminosis) is extremely rare as a result of the use of plant foods, because only 1/6 of the carotene received with it (no more, and perhaps less) will be absorbed and converted. However, the abuse of carrot juice can sometimes lead to such an effect. The risk is especially high in young children, whom caring parents overly stuff with “utilities”, forgetting about the sense of proportion and the right balance.
Just in case it is useful to know the signs of excess vitamin A:
- nausea, vomiting;
- weakness, sweating (usually nocturnal);
- skin itching, skin rashes, cracks in the corners of the mouth;
- brittle nails and hair;
If there is a suspicion that you still overdo it with the use of carrot juice, it is necessary to stop taking it. Avoid this drink should be with inflammatory bowel diseases, exacerbation of gastric ulcer and duodenal ulcer. Because of the high sugar content in many varieties of carrots, diabetics are advised to consult their doctor first.