Purple carrots are the perfect complement to our anti-aging diet
The 9 best anti-aging foods for those over 40
Definitely less common on our tables than their orange “colleagues”, purple carrots are actually much older and were used in past centuries as a natural remedy for various health problems. Thanks to their nutritional profile, they possess numerous beneficial properties.
As a low-calorie food, purple carrots can be safely consumed even by those who follow low-calorie diets. They are also rich in anthocyanins, powerful antioxidants associated with various benefits for our health. Their action counteracts the formation of free radicals and the effects of oxidative stress, responsible for cellular aging: a healthy and balanced diet, which involves the consumption of excellent quantities of these antioxidants, is the first step to live longer and reduce the signs of aging.
Anthocyanins belong to the class of polyphenols and give carrots their characteristic purple color – they are in fact present in many other foods such as blackberries, grapes, purple potatoes and purple cabbage. Several studies have highlighted their role in many different areas: for example, they have been shown to be useful in combating body inflammation, reducing the levels of pro-inflammatory cytokines and consequently the risk of developing related diseases. They are also useful in keeping the symptoms of intestinal diseases related to chronic inflammation under control.
A review of 24 studies, published in Nutrients, revealed the link between a diet rich in anthocyanins and improved vascular function. These antioxidants have a protective action on the heart, improving blood flow and reducing the stiffness of the arteries. Further research has also highlighted their effectiveness in decreasing the risk of type 2 diabetes and metabolic syndrome: in particular, they play an important role in keeping cholesterol and blood sugar levels under control, as well as increasing the response to insulin.
Anthocyanins have still shown an antitumor action: test tube and guinea pig experiments have shown how these substances inhibit the growth and spread of cancer cells in breast, liver, skin, blood and colorectal cancers . The consumption of foods rich in anthocyanins is also linked to a reduction in the risk of developing various forms of cancer. More studies are needed on the subject, but these first results are very promising.
Beyond their important antioxidant content, purple carrots are packed with other vital nutrients. They are an excellent source of potassium, which plays a major role in keeping blood pressure under control, and of manganese, which is important for better brain function. Vitamin A is a panacea for eyesight and skin, protecting us from aging and the onset of age-related diseases.
Fiber, on the other hand, is an excellent ally for those who want to lose weight: in fact, they increase the level of hormones responsible for the sense of satiety. Several studies, such as the one published in the British Medical Journal, have highlighted an important correlation between the consumption of foods such as purple carrots and greater weight loss.