Ingredient Type: Plant-derived extract, herb
Also Known As: Carota, Carotte, Cenoura, Danggeun, Daucus carota subsp. sativus, Gajar, Gelbe Rube, Hongdangmu, Hu Luo Bo, Karotte, Mohre, Mohrrube, Ninjin, Zanahoria.
The carrot plant is known to be a biennial plant belonging to the Apiaceae family, which is commonly used to produce edible taproots. Daucus Carota is native to Southwestern Asia and Europe, however, the plant is known to have originated initially in Persia. Historically this plant was cultivated originally for its seeds and leaves. It wasn’t until later that a medicinal value was recognized in its fruit.
The most commonly found forms of the carrot fruit colors include a white, orange, purple, and yellow variation. Carrots are widely used in cooking as well as consumption in its raw form, specifically in cuisines. The carrot plant and fruit exhibits potential antioxidant properties in both its extracted and powdered form which are known to contain high amounts of Vitamins (Vitamin C, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, and Vitamin K), beta-carotene, and Minerals (Manganese, Zinc, Potassium, Magnesium, and Calcium). Carrot powder is also a rich source of alpha-carotene, anthocyanin, lycopene, lutein, and polyacetylene.
In ancient times, the whole carrot fruit, as well as its dried carrot powder, were used to support various medicinal conditions. Amongst any other culture, China was known to have produced and harvested the carrot plant more than any other country. As time passed and the medicinal/health values were more widely recognized, the carrot crop was grown in high volumes in other countries as well, including in the United States, California specifically.
There are several varieties of carrots. Initially, in the 1500s, the orange version was developed by Dutch. Nevertheless, the yellow-colored carrot was noted to be popular by the Japanese during the 1600s. Around the 1700s, Europe was known to have developed the white version of the carrot (13).
In support of the purported benefits of consuming the fruit itself, research indicated that the British, during World War II, proclaimed they had a clear vision in the night after consuming carrots in large quantities, and it made it convenient for them to shoot down German aircraft. Aside from vision, consumption of carrot powder was used to enhance general health. Traditionally, it was also noted that carrots were used to flavor, color and support the nutritious value in herbal drinks, snacks, dressings, herbal tonics, beverages, as well as other food recipes (14).
WHAT DOES SCIENCE TELL US?
Carrot Powder Support Eye Health
Vision plays a significant role in our lives on a daily basis as it is one of the main senses used nearly every second that we are awake. However, there are several eye-related disorders, including refractive errors, age-related macular degeneration, cataract, diabetic retinopathy, glaucoma, amblyopia, and strabismus that hinder out ability to see. The number of people suffering from eye and vision complications is increasing daily. Due to the desire for alternatives to pharmaceutical drugs, there is a high demand for natural remedies and herbal products that help relieve complications without extra chemicals and toxic substances. Specifically for eye and vision health, the carrot plant is one of the most vital vegetables considered due to its vitamin and mineral content. For example, carrot extract powder is known to support the retina, thereby enhancing retinal health and function, supporting the vision of individuals with such eye-related complications.
In a particular study, 30 male Wistar rats were involved in the investigation in order to analyze the differential effect of carrot powder on the eye’s retina. Out of 30 male rats, 15 were assigned a diet without carrot powder, while 15 others were given a diet supplemented with carrot powder (150 g/kg diet). The experiment went on for 3 weeks. Following the treatment period of three weeks, an electroretinogram (ERG) was used to analyze the retinal function of the rats. Ultra-performance liquid chromatography measured the hepatic and plasma retinoids and carotenoids. The observed results indicated enhanced retinal function in the rats who were provided with high-dose dietary carotenoids. It was however noted that the rats that were diabetic were found to have had detrimental effects from the carrot powder. Further research is necessary to determine the mechanism as carrots are considered low on the glycemic index (1).
In another study, carrot powder was used to examine the visual function and metabolism in Computer Vision Syndrome (CVS). It was a double-blind, placebo-controlled study in which CVS participants were involved and split into two supplementation groups. The control group were provided 15g of cream of wheat powder and 15g of carrot powder, 33% of vitamin A RDA for adults, which was given to the carrot-enriched CVS participant group. The vehicle used to administer the powder was yogurt and isocaloric pudding for a duration of 4 weeks. Plasma carotenoids/retinoids, retinal function, plasma lipids, self-perceived vision status, and oxidative stress markers were assessed at the start, as well as the conclusion of this study. Results analyzed that carrot powder played a protective role through the indication in its reduction of oxidative stress markers and LDL cholesterol levels. It was concluded that even a minimal supplementation dose of carrot powder could be highly beneficial, as a higher dose may have adverse effects (2).
Another study was performed to analyze the impact of vitamin A and carrot root extract on the visual functions of diabetic individuals. In this study, 50 male Wistar albino rats were used and split into five randomized groups, a control group, a diabetic group treated with low dose vitamin A, a diabetic group injected with sodium citrate buffer, a diabetic group treated with high dose vitamin A, a diabetic group who were administered solely with carrot extract. The results from the test groups were analyzed and compared to that of the control group. The data revealed that the retinal thickness was decreased significantly in the diabetic rats. Additionally, observable degeneration of their synaptic layers and enhanced apoptotic ganglion cells were monitored in diabetic rats. The increased activity of neovascularization in the inner retina was observed as well. However, the outer retina indicated vacuolar degeneration of the photoreceptor cell layer. Ironically, supplementing with carrot extract and vitamin A was found to reduce the retinal injuries in diabetic animals, while restoring the previously measured parameters to normal. This shows that both treatments had beneficial effects in their ability to improve visual functions through the reduction of neuronal degeneration and oxidative stress (3).
Boost Immunity by Carrot Powder
A human’s immune system is a whole network of pathways and intricate stages in the body that shield the body from harmful microorganisms, ultimately protecting it from diseases and other external threats. It is highly essential to enhance immunity from natural sources like carrot powder, which is rich in vitamin C, supporting the body’s ability in building antibodies. These antibodies are known to help defend the immune system. The vitamin C present in carrots also helps prevent infections and microorganism attacks.
The study was performed to analyze the immune system with the formulation of natural sources, including carrot powder, tomato powder, groundnut oil, soy protein isolate, and fish oil. In this study, two packages were used, namely polyethylene pouches and polypropylene pouches. The storage conditions were 42°C and 27°C at 65% humidity. At regular intervals, the microbiological, chemical, and sensory qualities were analyzed. Results revealed that these natural sources, including carrot powder, played a significant role in enhancing immunity, and these types of formulations can potentially be used as an active therapeutic intervention (4).
Non-communicable diseases are on the rise, especially with the population increase, there is a push to promote an increase in production of livestock, as wells as fruits and vegetables. This study was performed to develop functional sausages of buffalo meat fortified with carrot powder (0-5%) and 20-30% buffalo white fat. The quality and shelf life of carrot-fortified buffalo meat sausages were assessed based on physicochemical characteristics, including fat content (14-16.20%), moisture content (60-62%), ash content (1.8-2.18%), pH value (6.20-6.35), protein content (18.20-18.56%), TBA value (0.08-0.089), and total plate count (2-2.4 log). Nine sausage variants were optimized using the response surface methodology. The sensory quality of the sausages was observed to be better than the control. The overall desirability ranges from 0.6 to 0.7 on a scale of one. In comparison to the control, the sausage sample with a carrot powder of 4.27% and a fat level of 28.54% was judged to have good qualities. The samples of sausage were determined to be under the permitted limit for microbes. It was concluded that the optimization of animal fat and carrot powder has the ability to produce functional sausages with improved microbial, physicochemical, sensory, and nutritional activity. It was concluded that carrot powder has the ability to improve proximate composition (5).
Carrot Powder Supports Diabetes
Diabetes has become one of the leading diseases across the globe. It is known as one of the top chronic diseases present in the developed world today, commonly associated with dietary-derived elevated blood sugar levels. Diabetes is known to be associated with damage to blood vessels, the heart, kidneys, eyes, and nerves in its later stages. Research shows that non-starchy foods can help diabetic patients, specifically including vegetables such as carrots. A small amount of carrot in any form, such as dried carrot powder, can be beneficial.
In an article, the benefits of a mixture of vegetables like Fenugreek leaves, carrot powder, drumstick leaves, spinach, tomato, and radish were discussed. The aim of the study was to analyze the nutritional density of these vegetables in diabetic patients. Diabetic patients need to opt for food choices that is low in carbohydrates, rich in fiber, and can be digested easily. The results of the study concluded that carrots have a significant impact on diabetic patients. Carrots are a rich source of carotenoids, polyacetylenes, and phenolics. Carotenoids are antioxidants that help neutralize the effect of free radicals. The results from this study indicated that consuming carrots in any form are found to alleviate vitamin A deficiency, lowers cholesterol levels, and may be beneficial for weight loss (6).
Another study examined the effect of carrot powder in male Wistar rats indicating a significant reduction in blood glucose without improving cardiac structure and function. For three weeks, male Wistar rats were given either a control diet or one that included carrot powder. Half of the rats in each group received an injection of STZ (65 mg/kg body weight) to induce type 1 diabetes. The varied diets for each rat were maintained for an additional 9 weeks. At eight weeks after STZ delivery, cardiac structural and functional characteristics were assessed using echocardiography. Diabetic rats demonstrated a significantly longer isovolumetric relaxation time and a significantly lower cardiac output systolic function parameter when compared to non-diabetic rats. Diabetic animals were found to have significantly larger left ventricular internal dimensions and posterior wall thickness. When compared to diabetic rats not receiving any treatment, blood glucose levels in the carrot-supplemented diabetic rats were considerably lower. Both treated and untreated diabetic rats reported higher levels of lipid peroxidation. When compared to control rats, diabetic rats receiving carrot powder supplements had significantly higher levels of catalase. Supplementing with carrots considerably reduced blood glucose levels, but did not bring them back to normal. In rats with type 1 diabetes, it had no impact on cardiac abnormalities or antioxidant status. It showed that the blood glucose could be lowered with carrot powder with no meaningful impact on cardiac function and structure. It was concluded that carrot powder can be used to support those with type II diabetes (7).
Carrot Powder is Known to Improve Skin Health
Skin problems, including aging, wrinkles, freckles, and acne, have become a leading problem around the world, especially as it relates to aging and environmental factors. While the perspective at any age is to keep one’s skin healthy and hydrated, internal as well as external factors can make this ideal difficult to achieve. For this purpose, more and more people have sought herbal treatments and natural remedies for skin health in order avoid toxic chemicals and further insult.
In this study, creams that have anti-oxidant properties were used to formulate benefits for the skin. Punica granatum leaves were shade dried before being extracted through the Soxhlet process with the help of various solvents, including n-hexane, alcohol, and Benzene. In this study, cream formulations were based on the assessment of the antioxidant activity of the selected herbal extracts. Neem oil, carrot powder, and Jamul powder were used in the formulation of the creams in quantities ranging from F1 to F4. The creams had to remain stable for two months at 30°C and 50°RH and 40°C and 75°RH. During a 12-month period, real-time stability investigations were also carried out. It is concluded that herbal creams, including carrot powder, have antioxidant properties without side effects, proving to be a support the protective barrier of the skin. It was analyzed that carrot powder was one of the main ingredients used in herbal creams that are known to help prevent skin aging (8).
Another Benefit of Carrot Powder
In an animal study, white Wistar rats were used to investigate the physiological effects of fruit and vegetable powder. 6 experimental groups and one control group were formed. The rats were isolated for five days. The rats were supplemented with vegetable powder, including carrot, beet, apples, and cabbage, in a quantity of 3 percent for a duration of 28 days. Results indicated that the consumption of carrot powder increased the amplification processes of catabolism of fats, proteins, and carbs as found in the blood levels of bilirubin, LDH, GGT, and the activity of alkaline phosphatase. Additionally, there was a significant observed decrease in the level of cholesterol and triglycerides. It was concluded that no negative deviation was observed by the consumption of carrot powder (9).
Diabetic Medications (Antidiabetic drugs): Moderate
Blood sugar levels may drop after consuming dried carrot powder. Blood sugar levels are also expected to reduce in response to taking diabetic medications. If carrot powder is taken together with diabetic treatments, blood sugar levels could drop too low, resulting in an emergent situation. Subsequently, it is important to check up one’s blood sugar regularly, especially when taking a new supplement or introducing a new food into one’s diet. It is best to consult with your healthcare provider to determine whether your diabetic medication dosages need to be adjusted because of the change in your diet. Some of the commonly prescribed medications used to treat diabetes are: glimepiride (Amaryl), Glyburide (DiaBeta, Micronase, Glynase PresTab), metformin (Glucophage), rosiglitazone (Avandia), pioglitazone (Actos), chlorpropamide (Diabinese), tolbutamide (Orinase), glipizide (Glucotrol), and a few other drugs (10).
Research indicated a child experiencing skin rashes and hives after eating a huge volume of carrots. It is suggested to consume a minimal quantity of carrots or carrot powder (11).
According to scientific studies, the dose suggested for individuals with vitamin A deficiency is 100 grams of grated carrots per day for 60 days. However, in children, the deficiency can be resolved by eating one spoonful, daily, of carrot powder in any mixture over a period of a few weeks.
Excess doses may lead to anaphylactic reactions, swelling, hives, rashes, and even diarrhea (11, 12).
- McClinton, K. J., Aliani, M., Kuny, S., Sauvé, Y., & Suh, M. (2020). Differential effect of a carotenoid-rich diet on retina function in non-diabetic and diabetic rats. Nutritional neuroscience, 23(11), 838-848.
- Murray, M. (2014). The effects of carrot carotenoids on visual function in long-hour computer users: a pilot study(Master’s thesis).
- El‐Mansi, A. A., Al‐Kahtani, M. A., Rady, A. M., El‐Bealy, E. A., & Al‐Asmari, A. M. (2021). Vitamin A and Daucus carota root extract mitigate STZ‐induced diabetic retinal degeneration in Wistar albino rats by modulating neurotransmission and downregulation of apoptotic pathways. Journal of Food Biochemistry, 45(4), e13688.
- Bal, D., Nath, K. G., Radhakrishna, D., Indiramma, A. R., & Vijayalakshmi, N. S. (2009). Storage behavior of immune-enhancing enteral formulation from natural sources. International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition, 60(sup6), 59-69.
- Khan, I., Ahmad, S., Haque, A., Chauhan, K., & Nayeem, M. (2020). Optimisation of buffalo (Bubalus bubalis) meat sausage with animal fat and carrot powder using response surface methodology.
- Lothe, P. D., Patil, P. S., & Kadam, P. S. Application of vegetables in development of healthy proprietary foods for diabetic management: A review.
- Louis, X. L., Raj, P., McClinton, K. J., Yu, L., Suh, M., & Netticadan, T. (2018). Supplementation of type 1 diabetic rats with carrot powder lowers blood glucose without improving cardiac structure and function. Preventive Nutrition and Food Science, 23(2), 115.
- Matangi, S. P., Mamidi, S. A., Raghavamma, S. T. V., & Nadendla, R. R. (2014). Formulation and evaluation of anti aging poly herbal cream. skin, 5(6).
- Koryachkina, S. Y., Ladnova, O. L., Godunov, O. A., Kholodova, E. N., & Lazareva, T. N. (2016). The study of physiological effect of fruit and vegetable powders in animal experiment. Voprosy Pitaniia, 85(6), 48-56.
- Karkute, S. G., Koley, T. K., Yengkhom, B. K., Tripathi, A., Srivastava, S., Maurya, A., & Singh, B. (2018). Anti-diabetic phenolic compounds of black carrot (Daucus carota Subspecies sativus var. atrorubens Alef.) inhibit enzymes of glucose metabolism: an in silico and in vitro validation. Medicinal Chemistry, 14(6), 641-649.
- Politis, P. (2005). Transition from the carrot to the stick: the evolution of pharmaceutical regulations concerning pediatric drug testing. Widener L. Rev., 12, 271.
- Shaaban, S. Y., El Gendy, Y. G., Mehanna, N. S., El-Senousy, W. M., El-Feki, H. S., Saad, K., & El-Asheer, O. M. (2018). The role of probiotics in children with autism spectrum disorder: A prospective, open-label study. Nutritional neuroscience, 21(9), 676-681.
- Rashevska, T. O., & Vasheka, O. M. (2011). The technology of butters’ enriching with carrots’ powder. Procedia Food Science, 1, 1404-1409.
- Madora, E. P., Takalani, T. K., & Mashau, M. E. (2016). Physicochemical, microbiological and sensory properties of low fat yoghurt fortified with carrot powder. International Journal of Agricultural and Biological Engineering, 9(1), 118-124.