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Does Carrot Juice Lower LDL Cholesterol?

by
author image Sandi Busch
Sandi Busch received a Bachelor of Arts in psychology, then pursued training in nursing and nutrition. She taught families to plan and prepare special diets, worked as a therapeutic support specialist, and now writes about her favorite topics – nutrition, food, families and parenting – for hospitals and trade magazines.
Does Carrot Juice Lower LDL Cholesterol?
Nutrients in carrot juice may help lower cholesterol. Photo Credit b-d-s/iStock/Getty Images

Carrot juice contains a significant amount of vitamin C and beta-carotene. It also has more fiber than you might expect from a juice. Preliminary research shows that the two vitamins may help lower cholesterol, and fiber is known to have a beneficial role. One study connects carrot juice to lowering your risk of coronary artery disease, but research so far has not directly linked carrot juice to lower LDL cholesterol.

Soluble Fiber Fights Cholesterol

The fiber in a carrot is about half the soluble type and half the insoluble type. Soluble fiber binds with cholesterol, then carries it out of your system, which helps lower the cholesterol known as LDL, or low-density lipoprotein. LDL cholesterol is known as the bad cholesterol because it’s the type that can attach to arteries, create a blockage and lead to a heart attack or stroke. One cup of canned carrot juice has 2 grams of total fiber, which is the same amount you’ll get from eating one large carrot. Women should consume 25 grams of fiber daily, while men need 38 grams.

Vitamin C and Cholesterol

Vitamin C may help metabolize cholesterol into bile acids, which is the primary way your body eliminates cholesterol. But research into its ability to lower LDL cholesterol has produced mixed results, so more studies are needed to determine its effectiveness. Researchers found that high doses of supplemental vitamin C caused a significant decrease in blood levels of LDL cholesterol, according to a review of existing research in the “Journal of Chiropractic Medicine” in June 2008. You won’t get a mega-dose of vitamin C from carrot juice, but 1 cup still provides 34 percent of the daily value.

Beta-Carotene May Lower Cholesterol

Carrot juice has about four times more beta-carotene than one carrot. Beta-carotene is an antioxidant and an important source of vitamin A because your body converts it into the form of vitamin A that keeps your eyes and skin healthy. One cup of carrot juice supplies 45 percent of the daily value for vitamin A. While more research is needed in people to determine its potential to lower LDL cholesterol, laboratory studies show promise. When rats were fed beta-carotene supplements, their total cholesterol went down, according to a study in the “Journal of Physiology and Biochemistry” in December 2013.

Carrot Juice Prevents Cardiovascular Disease

As LDL cholesterol circulates in your bloodstream, reactive molecules known as free radicals can oxidize, or break down, the outer cover of the lipoprotein. Damaged LDL cholesterol significantly contributes to hardening of the arteries, or atherosclerosis, reports the Medical Biochemistry Page. The antioxidants in carrot juice may lower your risk for cardiovascular disease by preventing fat oxidation, according to a study in the September 2011 issue of the “Nutrition Journal.”

Other Nutrients in Carrot Juice

Carrot juice is a healthy choice because 1 cup of juice provides most of the same nutrients as you’ll get from eating 5 cups of chopped raw carrots, reports Stanford Medicine. In addition to vitamins A and C, 1 cup of carrot juice provides 5 percent of the daily value for potassium, 26 percent of vitamin B-6 and 46 percent of vitamin K. These daily values are based on consuming 2,000 calories daily.

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