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Heart Healthy Recipes, Issue #076 - Heart Healthy Carrots
September 28, 2023
Welcome to Heart Healthy Recipes' Newsletter!
The focus this month is on in-season carrots and the heart health benefits, along with some heart healthy carrot recipes. The recipes include ginger carrot soup and healthy, low-fat, low-sodium carrot fries.
Heart Health Benefits of Carrots:Carrots are abundant in heart-healthy factors and are most known for being rich in beta-carotene, plant-based vitamin A, along with alpha-carotene. These carotenoids are very powerful antioxidants that may help avoid the onset of some cardiovascular diseases. The glutathione-rich carrots are a super detoxifying vegetable which may help in reducing coronary artery disease as well.
The potassium in carrots is very important in maintaining regular blood pressure and, at proper levels, may alleviate irregular heart rhythms or arrythmias.
Carrots contain a healthy amount of fiber. This fiber may improve weight-loss management and naturally help clean the gastrointestinal tract as well.
The anti-inflammatory carrots also help improve the overall immune system by reducing inflammation. Prolonged inflammation in the body has been linked to chronic illnesses in the body such as heart disease.
Some of the healthiest ways to cook carrots are steaming and air frying. Cooked carrots may help release more nutrients than raw and also are lower in sugars chemically than raw carrots.
Herbs that pair well with carrots, adding even more heart health and flavor, are thyme, parsley, chives, basil, oregano, and dill.
Healthy Carrot FriesLow-fat, low-sodium carrot fries seasoned with paprika and cooked in an air fryer. The potassium in the paprika, may help regulate blood pressure, along with garlic helping to lower blood pressure.
Recipe Ingredients:1 lb. carrots, cut in ¼-inch sticks
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon paprika
¼ teaspoon sea salt (optional)
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Recipe Instructions:Preheat air fryer to 350°F (176°C) for 3-5 minutes. Wash and scrub carrots to avoid peeling them - since carrots are healthier and more nutritious with skins intact.
Cut carrots in half lengthwise, then cut in half widthwise. Next, cut each piece, as evenly as possible, into ¼-inch or ½-inch sticks to make the fries.
In a large mixing bowl, combine carrot fries with olive oil, garlic powder, paprika, sea salt (optional), and black pepper. Toss until carrots are coated with the seasoning.
Air fry the carrot fries in a single layer for approximately 20 minutes. Shake the basket halfway through to ensure even cooking. Check with a fork to ensure cooking complete. If needing to be crispier, place back in air fryer for another 2-3 minutes.
Serve warm with favorite, heart-healthy dipping sauce.
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Ginger Carrot SoupIn-season, heart-healthy carrot soup flavored with ginger. The cooking method used in this recipe will help retain maximum nutritional benefits with the carrot juices staying in the soup.
Recipe Ingredients:1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
3 tablespoons fresh ginger, grated
3 garlic cloves, minced
½ teaspoon sea salt (optional)
½ teaspoon black pepper
2 lbs. carrots, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
4 cups vegetable broth
1 teaspoon cinnamon
pine nuts, for garnish (optional)
green onions, for garnish (optional)
Recipe Instructions:In a large pot, add olive oil and heat on medium-high. Add onions and sauté for 2 to 5 minutes or until translucent. Add ginger, garlic cloves, sea salt (optional) and black pepper.
Next, add the carrots to the pot and cook 5 minutes more, stirring occasionally. Stir in apple cider vinegar, vegetable broth and cinnamon.
Bring to a boil. Cover and reduce the heat to low and allow for a gentle simmer. Simmer for 20-30 minutes or until carrots are soft when poked with a fork.
Allow to cool approximately 5-10 minutes before transferring into a high-powered blender. Blend until soup is a smooth purée. If soup is too thick, add a little water. If desired, garnish with pine nuts and green onions. Serve soup warm.
Tip: Leaving carrots unpeeled will help retain more of the carrot's nutrients.
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*Medical/Nutritional Disclaimer: Heart Healthy Recipes' Newsletter and HeartHealthyRecipes.com website offers informational service only and the information contained in this newsletter is not intended as professional nutritional or medical advice. The content in this newsletter should not be used solely during a medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Please consult your doctor or other qualified health care provider regarding any course of medical treatment.
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