15 Best Plant-Based Beta Carotene Rich Foods (Fruits & Veggies) C40H56

If you are looking for the rich beta carotene foods? We have listed out the Top 15 red, orange, yellow, and green beta carotene fruits and veggies and their benefits.

By Newsmeter Network  Published on  18 Nov 2021 5:36 AM GMT
15 Best Plant-Based Beta Carotene Rich Foods (Fruits & Veggies) C40H56

Ever heard of the concept "Eat the rainbow? This phrase is most heard by nutritionists and health experts who advocate eating natural foods of different colors. One such pigment found in many red, orange and yellow colored veggies and fruits is Beta Carotene or β-carotene.

Beta Carotene is derived from the Latin word "Carota," meaning Carrot is a type of carotenoid and an antioxidant. The body sources Beta Carotene from foods or supplements and converts that into Vitamin A or retinol, an essential nutrient. Vitamin A is responsible for protecting eye health, boosting the immune system, and lowering the risk of heart diseases.

While excess Beta carotene from supplements can be toxic as it raises Vitamin A levels in the body, Beta Carotene from food is generally safe. This is because the body only converts only the required amounts of Beta Carotene to Vitamin A and not in excess.

In this article, we have put together the list of 15 Beta Carotene foods which includes bright-colored vegetables and fruits.

List of 15 Beta-Carotene Rich Foods for Vitamin A Deficiency:

Here are the 15 foods which contain good amounts of Beta Carotene required by the body:

1. Carrots:

Ever wondered why carrots have such bright orange color? It's because of the high amounts of Beta Carotene found in them. Carrots are one of the Beta Carotene-rich vegetables available to us. 1 Large carrot contains about 6mg of Beta Carotene which converts to about 1,000 mcg of Vitamin A. Eating carrots regularly can protect our vision, strengthen our bones and prevent oxidative damage caused due to free radicals. Studies also show that the body can absorb more Beta Carotene from cooked carrots than raw ones, since it is not a heat-sensitive nutrient.

2. Sweet Potato:

Sweet Potatoes of the orange variety are one of the major sources of Beta-Carotene. Baked sweet potatoes offer more amounts of this nutrient than raw. 1 Cup of baked sweet potatoes can provide about 23mg of Beta-Carotene, a precursor of Vitamin A. The deeper the orangish color in the sweet potatoes, the higher the amounts of Beta Carotene and other antioxidants. As a result, sweet potatoes are natural food sources for fighting Vitamin A deficiency and reducing the risks associated with cancers.

3. Red and Yellow Bell Peppers:

When we talk of bright-colored vegetables, images of shiny red and yellow bell peppers come to our minds. The red, yellow and orange colors of these sweet peppers come from Beta Carotene. Depending on the amount of Carotene present in each variety, the intensity of color varies. For example, red bell peppers have highest amounts of B-Carotene at 5.4 micrograms/gm, while yellow bell peppers have lowest amounts at 0.2 microg/gm. Red bell peppers also exhibit significantly high antioxidant activity which helps in reducing oxidative stress to the body cells.

4. Butternut Squash:

Butternut squash is an orange-colored vegetable that gets its deep orangish hue from Beta Carotene. This winter vegetable is known for its nutritional-rich profile, especially for being an excellent source of Vitamin A. A 100gms serving of Butternut squash offers enough Beta Carotene that gets converted into 10631 IU which is 213% DV of Vitamin A. Apart from preventing eye disorders, butternut squash is known to prevent asthma and lower cancer risks due to high amounts of Beta Carotene present in it.

5. Broccoli:

If you thought only red and orange vegetables have beta carotene, you are mistaken. Dark green vegetables like Broccoli are also Beta Carotene rich foods. In fact, 1 Cup of Broccoli offers about 70.7 mcg of Beta Carotene which gets converted into Vitamin A. This nutrient plays a key role in strengthening bones and vision. Along with Beta Carotene, Broccoli is also high in other antioxidants like Kaempferol which fight free radical damage at the cellular level to prevent inflammatory diseases.

6. Cantaloupe:

Cantaloupe gives a serious competition to red bell peppers and carrots when it comes to offering Beta Carotene. A 177 gms serving of Cantaloupe offers 3,850 mcg of Beta Carotene, which makes the fruit one of the richest sources of this nutrient. Because of this high value of Carotene, Cantaloupe offers high amounts of Vitamin A that strengthens our immune system and prevents frequent illnesses. Studies also show that taking a Beta-Carotene rich food like Cantaloupe can reduce the severity of respiratory diseases like Asthma.

7. Apricots:

Apricots are one of the best Beta-Carotene rich fruits which have orangish-yellow color with a mild tart taste. A 35gms serving of Apricots offer 383mcg of Beta Carotene that gets converted into Vitamin A by the body. The Vitamin A or retinol helps in protecting our eyes and reduces the risk of night blindness. Also, Beta Carotene shows powerful antioxidant activity that prevents inflammatory diseases and strengthens our immune system.

8. Pumpkin:

Pumpkin is another vegetable rich in beta-carotene which belongs to the squash family. Due to the presence of this carotenoid, pumpkins get their deep orangish hue. Studies show that canned pumpkins offer better beta carotene than the fresh variety due to the elimination of water content in the manufacturing process. 1 Cup of Canned Pumpkin offers 1906 RAE or Retinol Activity Equivalents of Beta Carotene which gets converted to meet 212% DV of Vitamin A. Due to this high offering of Vitamin A, Pumpkin naturally helps in promoting good eye and bone health along with strong immune system.

9. Mango:

Mangoes are delicious summer fruits that are renowned for their sweet, juicy pulp. Apart from their flavour-rich profile, mangoes are also packed with high amounts of Beta-Carotene. Depending on the amounts of this carotenoid present in Mangoes, the color of the fruits ranges from green (ripe), semi-ripe (greenish-yellow) and ripe (yellow to orange). Ripe mangoes contain more amounts of Beta-Carotene with a 100gm serving offering about 251.74 micrograms. Mangoes are thus rich in Vitamin A, which promotes healthy skin, eye and bone health.

10. Spinach:

Spinach is a dark green leafy vegetable which is one of the major sources of Beta Carotene. Although Spinach contains good amounts of this pigment, the red and orange colors are masked due to the presence of chlorophyll, a green substance present in the leaves. 100gms of raw spinach offers about 6288 micrograms of Beta Carotene while cooked spinach offers 11318 micrograms. Spinach contains high amounts of Vitamin A which moisturizes skin and hair along with preventing tissue damage due to free radicals.

11. Peas:

Peas are another beta-carotene-rich vegetables which offer a wide range of benefits to our body. 100gms serving of raw peas offers 760 micrograms/gram of Beta Carotene, while cooked peas offer 1216 microgram/gram. This shows that cooked peas are better than raw ones when it comes to beta carotene levels. Peas are also an excellent source of Vitamin A, which the body produces by converting Beta Carotene. This is why nutritionists recommend including peas as part of a healthy balanced diet to prevent eyes, bones, and skin problems.

12. Romaine Lettuce:

One of the best salad vegetables that is rich in beta carotene is Romaine Lettuce. This low-calorie food is an excellent option to boost good eye health. Romaine Lettuce offers 2456mg of Beta Carotene per 1 cup serving. Apart from this nutrient, Romaine Lettuce also contains 8710 IU of Vitamin A which is essential for smooth skin, hair and strong bones. Besides these two, Romaine lettuce also contains many antioxidants that ward off seasonal diseases and fight free radicals.

13. Oranges:

Oranges are citrus fruits which are renowned for their Vitamin-C rich profiles. However, oranges are also quite in Beta Carotene and in fact, get their orangish hue from this pigment. According to studies, 100gms of frozen, concentrated orange juice contains 62 µg of beta carotene. This nutrient which is a precursor of Vitamin A which helps in promoting good eye and bone health.

14. Microgreens:

Microgreens are one of the healthiest foods on the planet. They are loaded with important nutrients like vitamins and minerals which support good health. Not many people know that microgreens are also loaded with beta carotene. Depending on the variety, microgreens can offer 12mg of Beta carotene per 100gms serving. Besides Beta Carotene, Microgreens also contain other carotenoids like lutein and Zeaxanthin which are powerful antioxidants.

15. Bok Choy:

Bok Choy is a good source of Beta Carotene which is mostly used in Asian cuisine. 100gms serving of Bok Choy offers 2681 micrograms of Beta Carotene along with 243 mg of Vitamin A. Boy Choy is also a superfood as it offers a wide variety of nutrients like vitamins and minerals. These nutrients prove to be extremely beneficial in strengthening our bones, boosting good heart health and reducing inflammatory diseases like Cancers.

Those are the 15 Best Beta Carotene Rich foods that contribute to good health. By including these foods in your regular diet, you can prevent Vitamin A deficiency naturally. However, if you have critically low levels of Beta Carotene, then supplements maybe an option to consider for immediate results.

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