Carrot - Research
Currently, there are no clinical studies available on the external uses of carrot. However, observational and laboratory studies show that diets rich in fruits and vegetables, such as carrots, can decrease the risk of certain cancers.17,18 Ingestion of beta-carotene, a constituent of carrots, has been shown to improve vision.9 Laboratory investigations show carrot seed oil to be a muscle relaxant and vasodilator, and may potentially be heart and liver protective. Further human clinical studies comparing carrot oil with carotenoids, beta-carotene, or vitamin A are needed to support these observations.15
The Greek word for carrot, philon, comes from their word for love, and in many cultures, carrots were considered a potent aphrodisiac .4,9,10
Although both cultivated and wild carrots are used medicinally, the wild carrot is considered superior.6 Native American, Chinese, English, and Ayurvedic traditional medicine have used carrots internally and externally for many applications.3,4,6,11 These include various skin, kidney, liver, digestive, female reproductive, and blood conditions, as well as diabetes.3,4,5,6,11,12 Carrots have also been used to reduce toxins in the body and expel worms.3,6 Carrot seeds have historically been used for abortion and to promote menstruation.3,4
Carrot seed oil is used in aromatherapy for arthritis, gout, and menstrual problems as well as to improve digestion, to reduce toxins, and for liver regeneration.3,13 It has applications in revitalizing and regenerating dry, pallid skin by moistening and improving skin tone and elasticity.14 It is utilized in anti-wrinkle creams and said to deter wrinkles and skin discolorations.1,14 In combination with other aromatherapy oils, it is used to treat certain respiratory conditions.13
1 Bown D. The Herb Society of America New Encyclopedia of Herbs and Their Uses. London: Dorling Kindersley Ltd.; 2001.
2 Facciola S. Cornucopia: A Source Book of Edible Plants. Vista, CA: Kampong Publications; 1990.
3 Lawless J. The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Essential Oils: The Complete Guide to the Use of Oils in Aromatherapy and Herbalism. Dorset, UK: Element Books, Ltd.; 1995.
4 Kapoor L, ed. Handbook of Ayurvedic Medicinal Plants. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press; 1990.
5 British Herbal Pharmacopoeia. Dorset, UK: British Herbal Medicine Association; 1996.
6 Grieve M. A Modern Herbal. Vol. 1. New York: Dover Books; 1971.
7 Davidson A. The Oxford Companion to Food. London: Oxford University Press; 1999.
8 Arctander S. Perfume and Flavor Materials of Natural Origin. Carol Stream , IL: Allured Publishing Corporation; 1994.
9 Onstad D. Whole Foods Companion: A Guide for Adventurous Cooks, Curious Shoppers & Lovers of Natural Foods. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green Publishing Company; 1996.
10 Wood R. The New Whole Foods Encyclopedia: A Comprehensive Resource for Healthy Eating. New York, NY: Penguin Putnam Inc.; 1999.
11 Moerman D. Native American Ethnobotany. Portland, OR: Timber Press, Inc.: 1998.
12 Lewis WH, Elvin-Lewis MPF. Medical Botany: Plants Affecting Human Health. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; 2003.
13 Schnaubelt K. Beasley JM, trans. Advanced Aromatherapy: The Science of Essential Oil Therapy. 1st ed. Rochester, VT: Healing Arts Press; 1998.
14 Keville K, Green M. Aromatherapy: A Complete Guide to the Healing Art. Freedom, CA: Crossing Press; 1995.
15 DerMarderosian A, Beutler J, eds. The Review of Natural Products. St. Louis, MO: Facts and Comparisons; 2002.
16 D’Amelio FS. Botanicals: A Phytocosmetic Desk Reference. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press LLC; 1999.
17 Garner-Wizard M. Carotenoids in Human Health. HerbClip. May 30, 2003 (No. 120222-233). Austin, TX: American Botanical Council. Review of The role of carotenoids in human health by Johnson EJ. Nutrition in Clinical Care. 2002;5(2):56-65.
18 Milot B. Review of the Role of Diet in the Prevention of Gastrointestinal Cancers. HerbClip. August 31, 2004 (No. 050141-263). Austin, TX: American Botanical Council. Review of Nutrition in the chemoprevention of gastrointestinal cancer: where are we in the new millennium by Mullick T, Gasser E. Practical Gastroenterology. 2004;March:52-64.
19 Burden D. Carrots Profile: Overview. Available at: http://www.agmrc.org/agmrc/commodity/vegetables/carrots/carrotsprofile.htm. Accessed August 22, 2005.
20 Sylvia SA. Developing Essential Oils of Honeydew Melon, Carrot and Spinach for Export: A Report for the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation. RIRDC Publication No 00/50. Available at: http://www.rirdc.gov.au/reports/EOI/00-50.pdf. Accessed August 22, 2005.
21 McCoy S, Parlevliet G. Export Market Potential for Clean and Organic Agricultural Products. RIRDC Publication No 00/76. Available at: http://www.rirdc.gov.au/reports/ORG/00-76.pdf. Accessed August 22, 2005.