Carrot - Health Benefits of Carrot Juice
Botanical Name: Daucus carota
Family Name : Umbelliferae
A large number of carrot varieties, some indigenous but mostly imported from Europe and America, are cultivated in India. The color of the roots in the cultivated types varies from yellowish, orange, light purple, deep purple, to deep red etc.
An annual or biennial herb, with twice or thrice pinnate leaves and flattish umbebs of small, white flowers, each with a single, central crimson or red brown floret. The fruit is oblong, dorsally. flattered, with prickles tipped by minute bristles.
Origin and Distribution
The carrot appears to have originated in Central Asia, in the hills of Punjab and Kashmir in India, with a secondary center of distribution in Asia, Europe and North Africa around the Mediterranean. It is cultivated in India, Malaysia, Indonesia, Philippines, Central, East and West Africa, South America and the Caribbean.
Properties of carrot
Aromatic, stimulant, carminative, lithontriptic, antifertile, abortifacient, diuretic, galactagogic, ophthalmic and source of minerals.
Forms of Use :- Juice, decoction, essence, tincture.
Food Value of carrot
Carrot is valued as food mainly because it is a rich source of the fat soluble hydrocarbon, C40 H56 the beta form of which is the precursor of Vitamin A. Analysis of the edible portion of carrot gave the following composition (per 100 gm's of edible part):
Carrot : Medicinal Uses & benefits
Carrot products like carrot juice, carotene concentrates, carrot oil etc. are prepared by canning and dehydration. Both canning and dehydration have been used for preserving carrots. The carotene content of canned carrot is slightly affected by storage for six month, Vitamin B1& B2 are better retained but there is loss of vitamin C. It is stored in cans after pressure-cooking and oven-cooking.
For dehydration, carrots are subjected to steam blanching for 5-7 minutes. The sliced material is dipped in a solution of sulphur dioxide before blanching, as this treatment improves color retention in dehydrated products. Carrots are dried to 5% moisture or less and packed in containers with nitrogen. The dehydrated product retains most of the vitamins.
Beta-carotene concentrates are prepared from fresh or dried carrots. The juice-free carrots are macerated and digested with alkali under pressure and the carotene is extracted with mineral oil.
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