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Cooked carrots better nutritionally than raw?

Val Nov 2, 2006 11:01 AM

Just read this article on Dr. Weil's website and thought I'd share it and roasted carrots are delicious so this is good news:


  1. l
    laguera Nov 3, 2006 02:53 PM

    Harold McGee says more nutrients are available in cooked carrots.


    1. kare_raisu Nov 3, 2006 01:05 AM

      i believe cooking allows the carrots nutrients to be better absorbed

      1. s
        S U Nov 2, 2006 11:57 PM

        hmmm... I haven't paid much attention to a relative who happens to be a nutritionist, but he told me once that sometimes the heat from cooking "releases" more nutrients in veggies. But it only works in certain instances...

        1. amandine Nov 2, 2006 11:48 PM

          I'm not sure about this. My understanding is that cooking vegetables leeches a lot of the nutrients out (i.e. if you boil carrots and then toss out the broth. Heat increases entropy (disorder) between molecules so (correct me if i'm wrong) if anything heating will destroy organic compounds within your food) Antioxidants are just chemicals that sop up free radicals in your body, I'm no organic chemist but I don't see how cooking a vegetable could "create" new antioxidants that weren't already there.

          2 Replies
          1. re: amandine
            John Manzo Nov 16, 2006 01:29 AM

            wrong. cooking carrots "softens" cell walls and increases substantially the bio-availability of carrot's nutritional goodness. The same thing applies to lots of vegetables. Flavonoids in tomatoes are also made more bio-available by cooking.

            Raw foods are also more likely to contain parasites and the like. Cooking is good. Cooking is part of why we exist as a species.

            1. re: amandine
              Sherri Nov 16, 2006 01:49 AM

              Amandine writes, "My understanding is that cooking vegetables leeches a lot of the nutrients out (i.e. if you boil carrots and then toss out the broth."

              Let's separate some of the nutrients. Minerals generally are not destroyed in the cooking process, they are more stable than vitamins. Vitamins are divided into two major categories - fat-soluable and water-soluable. It is the water-soluable vitamins (B complex & vitamin C) that are most at risk in cooking, especially using large amounts of water that is discarded. The fat-soluable group, A D E K, are not as likely to be destroyed in water-based cooking.

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