Ah April! Warm temperatures, budding daffodils and crocuses and the anticipation of the arrival of the Easter Bunny! And what do bunnies love to eat? Carrots of course! And this week on Thursday, it just happens to be International Carrot Day! So get out your vegetable peelers and serve up some of those orange beauties. Raw or cooked, carrots are a great source of beta carotene which is converted into vitamin A in the liver and transferred to the retina of the eye to assist in night vision. Carrots are also rich in lutein and zeaxanthin, phytonutrients that can lower your risk of glaucoma and macular degeneration.
Carrots are also known for their anti-cancer properties such as the ability to bind with carcinogenic bile acids which helps in their disposal from the body. Carrots have been shown in studies to reduce the risk of lung, breast and colon cancers.
Carrots are full of antioxidants, and the only vegetable where levels will increase when cooked. Antioxidants along with Vitamin A are great for our skin, hair and nails. They repair sun damage, prevent wrinkles, acne, dry skin, blemishes, and uneven skin tones. You can keep your youthful looks by increasing your carrot consumption on both the inside AND outside. Here is a recipe for a carrot facial from RealFoodforLife.com using only whole food ingredients, so if you have some leftover after your facial, feel free to eat it!
2 medium carrots
1 TBS honey
1 TBS olive oil
- Peal the carrots and steam until soft.
- Mash the carrots into a creamy consistency.
- Mix in 1 TBS of all natural honey.
- Stir in 1 TBS of olive oil.
- Squeeze a few drops of fresh lemon juice into the face mask mixture. Lemon is a natural astringent and will help clean greasy skin. If your skin tends to dry easily, add only 8 to 10 drops; if you skin tends to be oily, add up to 1 tbsp. of lemon juice.
- Put small amounts onto your hands and gently massage the mask onto your whole face for several minutes. It’s great for your neck too!
- Keep it on for an additional 5 minutes.
- Wash it off with water in the sink or shower.