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The Little Known Side Effects of Eating Carrots
You may remember all the kids in an episode of the Magic School Bus turn orange after eating too many carrots – but can that really happen?
Turns out it definitely can, and there are real side effects of eating too many carrots. While carrots contain beta carotene which turns into vitamin A in the body, it is possible to consume too much. Carrots also contain vitamin K, C, B and E as well as the mineral potassium. Like anything, consuming way too much can cause side effects.
1. Carotenemia, or orange skin!
Beta carotene in carrots can accumulate in the blood too rapidly, and lead to an orange appearance of the skin. Just two carrots contain over 300% of your daily needs, so cut down on the orange stuff if you start to notice you also look orange! The condition is harmless.
2. Loosen stools
Too much fiber can cause your stools to loosen, and more than one serving of carrots contains enough fiber to cause an issue. Cooked carrots actually contain more fiber than raw, so choose raw carrots if you experience loose stools. Though the change will cause no lasting damage, it can be uncomfortable for a time. It’s best to not overdo your fiber intake, so watch your consumption of carrots, as well as whole grains and legumes, which also contain high fiber.
3. Not the best baby food
It turns out there are a number of studies that show that carrots are not safe for infants, so choose another baby food. They are also a choking hazard, so keep away from toddlers, as well.
4. Nutrient deficiency
Too many carrots can spell a deficiency for other essential nutrients – like calcium and zinc. You need a balanced diet of vitamins and minerals for health. Carrots are also low in fat, an essential part of every cell in the body.
Carrots are unfortunately subject to pesticides even when grown in the ground. Conventional carrots can contain up to 20 or more pesticides, so choose organic when you do consume carrots.
Carrots are a great source of vitamin A that is essential to the body, but it is possible to overdo it. If you consume more than a cup or two whole carrots per day and recognize any of the above symptoms, it’s time to cut down on the carrots.