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Carrots as healthy starchy veggie carb source?

by (333)
Updated about 18 hours ago
Created November 09, 2011 at 6:28 AM

Yams and sweet potatos, and potatos for some, are popular as a healthy carb source (ie peri-workout carb consumption). Carrots are fairly high in carb count compared to leafy veggies, and are sweet when cooked, why do we not see carrots recommended as a healthy starchy veggie carb source?

Medium avatar
5629 · December 06, 2011 at 5:07 AM

I love carrots and beets...but turnips and parsnips have a slightly medicinal taste that I never adjusted to.

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333 · November 10, 2011 at 6:39 AM

Not frowned upon, just not endorsed

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4393 · November 09, 2011 at 11:37 PM

AdrianaG, you can find starch info on rice on both of these sites; http://www.fineli.fi/foodsearch.php?name=rice&lang=en http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/search/?keywords=rice+white

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78422 · November 09, 2011 at 11:09 PM

Well, slap my face! How did I miss that?

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4080 · November 09, 2011 at 4:17 PM

I am on board with the Dr. Peat daily carrot salad. Been doing it for 4 months. Not sure if it's helping anything, but it sure isn't hurting. Dr. Peat doesn't recommend eating cooked carrots since they turn into food for any bad bacteria that might be lurking. (my problem, ugh!).

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4359 · November 09, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Agree with this - the carbs in carrots include a lot of sugar, so it's not a great source of bulk calories. That said, eating 1 per day can't hurt.

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20519 · November 09, 2011 at 11:46 AM

Carrots, a root, are definitely in rotation in my home - roasted, added to stocks, steamed, munched raw. I find them satisfying and tasty as well as another source of carb for me - in addition to tubers, squash, etc. Loaded in beta-carotene. High in Vitamin A. Nice fiber. Good for your eyes, heart. Anti-oxidants. Love 'em.

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20519 · November 09, 2011 at 11:40 AM

Carrots are definitely in rotation in my home - roasted, added to stocks, steamed, munched raw. I find them satisfying and tasty as well as another source of carb for me - in addition to tubers, squash, etc. Loaded in beta-carotene. High in Vitamin A. Nice fiber. Good for your eyes, heart. Anti-oxidants. I love 'em.

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15583 · November 09, 2011 at 7:48 AM

I'll be interested to see the responses to this, since carrots are often one of my staples due to convenience. I am somewhat wary of having large quantities though, as they're not really a starch, afaik they're mostly sugar.

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9 Answers

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1059 · November 09, 2011 at 1:07 PM

The carbs in carrots are mostly sugar. Sweet potatoes have sugar and starch

Sugars - carrots 5.2 gr / 1 cup, sweet potatoes 13.0 Starch -carrots .2 gr/ 1 cup, sweet potato 14

I am scratching my head, Nutrition Data shows NO STARCH in cooked white rice?

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4393 · November 09, 2011 at 11:37 PM

AdrianaG, you can find starch info on rice on both of these sites; http://www.fineli.fi/foodsearch.php?name=rice&lang=en http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/search/?keywords=rice+white

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4359 · November 09, 2011 at 3:39 PM

Agree with this - the carbs in carrots include a lot of sugar, so it's not a great source of bulk calories. That said, eating 1 per day can't hurt.

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4393 · November 09, 2011 at 7:39 AM

to be honest, i do not know if they are, or are not "recommended as a healthy starchy veggie carb source". I have never searched the paleo knowledge base on the subject.

i eat one raw carrot most days, usually in the morning. looking at various nutrition databases; they have a fructose content equal to/or smaller than the glucose content; which is my own guide to which fruits & veggies i personally consider eating.

Both Ray Peat & Danny Roddy (a fan of Peat) are fans of carrot salads; http://raypeat.com/articles/articles/epilepsy-progesterone.shtml "for example with a carrot salad; a dressing of vinegar, coconut oil and olive oil, carried into the intestine by the carrot fiber, suppresses bacterial growth while stimulating healing of the wall of the intestine. The carrot salad improves the ratio of progesterone to estrogen and cortisol, and so is as appropriate for epilepsy as for premenstrual syndrome, insomnia, or arthritis."

http://www.dannyroddy.com/main/2011/9/20/hair-like-a-fox-carrot-salad.html http://www.dannyroddy.com/main/2011/6/6/ray-peat-raw-paleo-ftw.html

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4080 · November 09, 2011 at 4:17 PM

I am on board with the Dr. Peat daily carrot salad. Been doing it for 4 months. Not sure if it's helping anything, but it sure isn't hurting. Dr. Peat doesn't recommend eating cooked carrots since they turn into food for any bad bacteria that might be lurking. (my problem, ugh!).

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4984 · November 09, 2011 at 10:10 AM

I adore carrots, I eat them nearly every day, raw and stredded, roasted or boiled, I can't get enough! I love root veg in general actually, they tend to have less of the plants potentially problematic "self defence nasties" than other "above groud" veg, especially if you peel them.

Carrots are also a great source of beta-carotine, which is metabolised into vitamin A. I'm not personally bothered about the carb content but if you are, according to wiki there are 9g of carbohydrate per 100g of carrot, which to me seems reasonable!!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrot

Check it out!

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48 · November 09, 2011 at 11:28 AM

Keep in mind the reason why they become sweet when you cook them (the same applies to sweet potato or other complex carb). They are becoming sweet because the polysaccharides are being broken down into more mono and disacchardies.

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78422 · November 09, 2011 at 11:09 PM

Well, slap my face! How did I miss that?

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37187 · November 09, 2011 at 6:07 PM

I love raw carrots, but don't actually like them that much cooked even though I am a walking sweet tooth. Once cooked, they don't hold a candle to sweet potatoes.

They appear on a lot of the approved foods list, though. I think they're "neither fish nor fowl" because they have a higher GI without a huge taste reward. Much better raw but even then I reach for the salt shaker to enhance the flavor.

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15003 · November 09, 2011 at 11:37 AM

Carrots are roots rather than tubers. They are fine to eat on a paleo diet, but compared to potatoes and sweet potatoes, they have less starch. NutritionData reports 10g of carbs for 100g of carrots, 20g of carbs for 100g of sweet potatoes. Note that some squashes have a similar lower carb profile, e.g., butternut squash which only has 12g of carbs.

So it's a fine paleo starch source, you'd just need to eat more in volume than you do other sources of starch.

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41452 · November 09, 2011 at 11:32 AM

I see the recommended all the time. Which version of paleo frowns upon carrots?

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333 · November 10, 2011 at 6:39 AM

Not frowned upon, just not endorsed

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7967 · November 09, 2011 at 5:49 PM

They are not a starch really, their carbs are from sugar. But they are a good carb source and FODMAPS approved. I love cooked carrots.

For some reason it seems a lot of 'paleo' people don't eat many root veggies - if they aren't low-carb, they will eat tubers but not so much roots. No reason for this except perhaps that many people didn't grow up eating roots. My mom was a huge fan - of carrots, parsnips, turnips and beets especially.

Medium avatar
5629 · December 06, 2011 at 5:07 AM

I love carrots and beets...but turnips and parsnips have a slightly medicinal taste that I never adjusted to.

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232 · November 02, 2012 at 6:46 AM

I read somewhere carrots are the second highest sugar root vegetable, next to beets. If you were looking for starch in particular, maybe parsnips.

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