Black carrot extract is derived from carrots with purple or black flesh. The World Carrot Museum theorizes that these types of carrots are Middle Eastern in origin, and may have first appeared in Turkey or Syria. While you can find black carrots in the United States – most often at farmer’s markets or shops that sell specialty produce – they are more common in Egypt, Pakistan, India, Afghanistan and Turkey.
- Extracts from black carrots are most often used as a natural food coloring. The extract’s color is similar to that of grape skin extract – red-blue or magenta. Food manufacturers may prefer black carrot extract to grape juice concentrate or grape skin extract because it is kosher and the color from black carrot extract retains its color better. The reddish color of black carrot extract is a natural alternative to synthetic food colorings such as FD&C Red 40, or a coloring made of insects, called carmine.
- Black carrots have revealed how fruit and vegetables help maintain gut health and reduce the risk of developing cancer.The antioxidant compounds they contain combine with fibre to play an important role in protecting the colon from cancer, Dr Anneline Padayachee from the University of Queensland has discovered.The compounds, known as polyphenols, are released from the plant cell during chewing. However, Anneline found that the majority of polyphenols are bound to fibre during this process. She found they were not free for absorption until they reached the colon in the final stages of digestion.
“Black carrots—which are actually deep purple—are packed with polyphenols similar to those which give blueberries and red wine their vivid colour. Anneline’s work showed that these compounds became bound to the fibre during chewing and remained bound throughout digestion in the stomach and small intestine.We discovered that fibre not only works as a ‘bowel scourer’, but is also able to safely traffic polyphenols to the colon, where they are involved in gut health protective mechanisms,” Anneline said. Anneline Padayachee in the lab (credit: Kathy Grube, University of Queensland. Bacteria in the gut finally break down the fibre-bound polyphenols before the fibre itself is excreted. Products resulting from digested polyphenols then protect the colon from cancer.
“So, to gain the benefits of polyphenols, you need to consume everything – the whole vegetable or fruit, including the fibrous pulp if you’re juicing it. Not only will you have a clean gut, but a healthy gut full of protective polyphenols.”
Please consult with your nutritionist.
carrot, purple carrot