Carrot is one of the most popular edible plants that exist. The carrot was present in Persia alone in the ancient world but is now universal. You can now find carrots almost anywhere on the planet. But is carrot a fruit or vegetable? Well, carrot is classified as a vegetable, and you’ll soon find out why.
Carrots usually come in orange colors, but you can also find yellow, black, purple, white, and red cultivars.
The modern-day carrot differs from the ancient one. It has only edible roots. This is unlike the ancient one that had aromatic leaves, which was one reason farmers cultivated them.
The classification of carrots has been quite confusing or tricky for some people, as most people don’t know if the carrot is a fruit or vegetable.
Is Carrot A Fruit or Vegetable?
Most people wonder if a carrot is a fruit or a vegetable and the confusion has not eased since botanists classify tomatoes as a fruit, even them we use them predominantly as a vegetable.
One of the basic ways to know fruit is by their bright colors and going by that standard, one might conclude that carrots are fruits.
Before we go straight to answering the question, is carrot a fruit or vegetable, let us define what fruit and a vegetable are. It is pertinent to know that chefs and botanists have different definitions of the terms fruit and vegetable.
While chefs define both based on their use, botanists define them based on how they form.
Using the botanical definition, a fruit is a structure that is a part of angiosperms or flowering plants that bear seeds. Fruits form from the plant’s ovary after the plant has released flowers. Fertilization turns these flowers from flowering plants into fruits.
Vegetables are plant parts that man and animals eat as food and they do not form from the ovary of the plant. The vegetable could be leaves, stems, roots, tubers, and sprouts.
Going by the definition above, carrot is a vegetable and not a fruit, despite its bright colors. It is a root vegetable.
Normally, people discard the root of plants and eat the parts above the ground, but with the carrot, a root vegetable, the reverse is the case. We eat the root, which is fleshy and edible, and discard the other parts of the plant.
How Nutritious Are Carrots as Vegetables?
Carrots are popular vegetables that have a lot of nutrients and a sweet taste. They are crunchy and fibrous.
One of the most important nutrients in carrots is beta carotene. The brighter the orange carrot, the more carotene it possesses.
Beta carotene, on entering the body converts to vitamin A and this vitamin A is good for the improvement of eyesight. Other nutrients that you can get from carrots are vitamin K1, potassium, fiber, and antioxidants.
Carrots consist mainly of water and about ten percent of carbohydrates. The fiber content is ideal for people who are on a weight-loss journey or who do not want to add weight.
This is because the carrot has quite meager amounts of protein and fat. The fiber makes one full easily without eating much.
Fibers are also great for the gut as they encourage the growth and wellbeing of the friendly bacteria living in the gut. This prevents diseases and improves health.
The fibers are also instrumental in lowering blood sugar because they slow down the rate by which your body breaks down starch and sugar. Last, it promotes consistent and safe bowel movements and combats constipation.
Is Carrot a fruit or vegetable? This has been a question that has aroused a lot of debate and confusion over the years.
But we hope that after this article, you know a carrot is a vegetable and why it is so. Carrots do not form from flowers like fruits rather they grow beneath the ground like roots. How a plant form is often a powerful indicator of which kind of food it is.
Carrots are quite rich in nutrients. You could also scout the internet for more nutritional benefits other than the ones listed here.