Eat More Carrots!

Every now and again I see a bumper sticker that says, "Eat More Kale" (probably thanks to this guy). I'd like to say that I like kale as much as the next guy, but I don't. I don't like it at all. Come to think of it, that might be about as much as "the next guy." Maybe that's why someone needs to make shirts about it.

Horse eating carrots.

I'm a spinach man. Raw. I'd prefer to squeeze it from can into a perfect parabolic flight straight into my mouth, but Bluto is big enemy and Olive Oyl needs to put on some weight. I'm kidding, of course, but I replace the lettuce in my salad with spinach for an extra kick of vitamins.

I can't see being Popeye, but Bugs Bunny is a different story. I can chew on a carrot. I think we could all learn a little more from Bugs and incorporate more carrots in our diet.

Why Carrots?

I shouldn't have write about why it is good to eat vegetables. That's common sense right?

So why single out carrots? Three reasons:

Beta Carotene

That's what gives carrots its orange coloring. Besides carrots it is found mostly in pumpkins and sweet potatoes. It seems like a nutrient that most people probably don't get a lot of... simply because it is hard to find.

Low Glycemic Load

What's glycemic load? You wouldn't have to ask this question if I had published my article on the glycemic index and glycemic loads. However, I haven't gotten it ready to publish yet. Carrots have an extremely low glycemic load... even for vegetables in general. I'm not a doctor, but I've read that insulin levels are tied to glycemic loads of foods and probably linked to diabetes. If you are going on low-carb diet and I'm not saying you should, it may be the best carb to cheat with. (See how carefully I tread the water here.)

Cheap and Long Lasting

Carrots are extremely cheap. I can find 5 pounds of them for around $2 at my local store. At that price, your other options are typically limited to potatoes or rice. (Actually beans can be found cheaply and they are great, but that's a different article.)

The key to cheap carrots is to skip the baby carrots. Yes, baby carrots are ready to eat right away. However, they are usually quite a bit more money, maybe setting you back $6-7 for 5 pounds.

I know the baby carrots are tempting. They tempt me too. Hey go for them if you want. It's better than not eating carrots at all.

For those of you who aren't so lazy, did you know that you can peel 10 pounds of carrots in less than 2 minutes? Don't believe me? Watch this guy do it in a little more than a minute:

If you only have 5 pounds of carrots, you can do it in half the time. (Yes, I was a mathematics major for a couple of years in college.)

You may still want to chop the carrots into smaller pieces, but I bet you'll get real good at that as well. Or you can leave them unchopped. Just because baby carrots come chopped doesn't mean you have to eat them way. Plus if you don't chop them, you can act out your inner Bugs Bunny.

Tasty and Easy to Eat

I don't usually like to say one food is better tasting than another, but you could statistically measure which foods people report taste better. If you did, I bet you'd find that carrots rank better than most vegetables. A very unscientific study of my two sons show that they do indeed taste better than most healthy foods.

They are also very easy to eat. You don't need to cook them. They don't leave your fingers orange like Cheetos.

While most people refrigerate carrots so that they last longer, if you are going to eat them in a few days, there's really no need to.

The Secret to Eating More Carrots

It's easy for me to write, "Eat more carrots", but I already know you aren't going to do it. You are going to close this browser window and go back to watching cat videos.

You may go through the charade of buying carrots. However, you'll then put them in the drawer of death in the refrigerator... the one you never open until they are a big soggy mess.

Instead, I want you make a Sunday night checklist. For me that checklist has stocking the kids diapers in the changing table, making sure they are shower and bathed, have clothes picked out for the week, etc. I've added "Prepare Carrots" to the list. Yes it is one more thing to do, but it doesn't take long and pays dividends all week.

Once you make it a habit, it will become second nature. You are setting healthy eating on autopilot.

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Diet, Health / Fitness

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