Carrots have many health benefits for the body. Individuals who have some nutritional herbal knowledge will be aware that ginseng is a good product, but because it is highly priced and excessively potent as a nourishing tonic, it is not practical for everyone as a supplement. A fact most people are unaware of is that within books of Chinese medicinal diet, carrots are regarded as tiny ginseng’s. Also Chinese medicine recommends, ginseng’s being beneficial for the liver and eyes.
1. Health benefits of Carrots
1) Can help digestion and clear stagnation of food
One of the ancient Chinese herbal texts Ben cao qiu zhen mentions that carrots can clear toxins from the intestines and stomach; they can remove stagnation of Qi and increase the energy to the stomach. Carrots aid in the transportation of food to help improve bowel movements and also in the absorption of foods in the intestines. Carrots are suitable for the following people: Those with a poor appetite, indigestion (bloating, heart burn, burping, constipation), pregnant and breast feeding women, Qi and blood deficiency (Iron deficiency), growing children, seniors as well as the general public. Carrots should be eaten about 3 times a week. I suggest that you ear stir-fried carrots and egg (please check the recipe below)
2) Carrots can nourish the eyes
In Chinese medicine diet therapy texts mention that “carrots taste sweet, with a mild (balanced) flavour. Carrots can moisturize the eyes, skin, joints, soft tissue and tendons”.
Eating regular amounts of carrots are suitable for the following conditions: those who work long hours in front of computers, those with eye diseases (red,dry, burning eyes and sleep in the corners of the eyes), tired, suitable for dry skin, dry vagina and dry nose/throat.
I suggest the following two dishes for the conditions above.
Chrysanthemum and carrot tea
; Stir fried carrots and snow peas,
Please see the recipe below .
3) To help strengthen the lung
Chinese medicine believes the lung does not like dryness. Any dry conditions will result in damage to the lungs. Carrots can moisturize the lungs to repair damage from dryness: long term smoking, hot and dry seasons, dehydration. I suggest you drink a glass of freshly squeezed carrot, orange, celery juice helps to protect the lungs, prevent respiratory tract flu.
4) Increasing the immune system
Chinese medicine believes that when the internal Qi (energy) is deficient the body will build up more toxins which can lead to lower immune system and making it easier for us to get sick. If we can eat carrots frequently, we can clear the toxins regularly and build up body energy to improve the immune system.
1) chrysanthemum and carrot tea
1 carrots chopped into small peices
3 cups of water
6 chrysanthemum flowers
Boil the water and chopped carrots for 5 minutes or until the carrot is soft. Add the chrysanthemum flowers and cover for another 5 minutes. After this you can drink the soup and eat the carrots, but not the flower.
Effects: Clears and moisturizes the eyes. Helps to the relieve the symptoms mentioned above.
2)Carrot and snow pea stirfry
1 carrot sliced
Handful of snow peas
2 tsp olive oil
Stir fry all the ingredients for 10 minutes on a low heat. If the stir fry becomes dry, add a little bit of water.
Effects: Improves digestion an bowel movement and moisturizes the body.
3) Carrot, celery, orange juice
Effects: Balance and moisturize the lung and increases the immune system.
4)Stirfry carrots and egg
1 carrot sliced
2tsp olive oil
Firstly, cook the egg like an omellete. Then remove the egg and fry the carrots with 2 tsp of olive oil until soft. Add the eggs once the carrot is cooked and stir together for 1 minute. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Effects: Increase energy and nourish the body.
1) I suggest cooking the carrots or slice raw carrot into thin slices. This makes it easier to digest as raw carrots are very hard.
2) Avoid eating large amounts of carrots as once, as eating too many may turn your skin orange. Eating 1 every second day.
3) If you are unsure your body constitution please visit your TCM practitioner or dietician to find out.