Baby carrots – That’s the new go-to for many healthy diet aficionados when it comes to choosing a healthy snack vegetable. They are small, healthy and everything is seemingly perfect about this tiny superfood. But that’s not how it may actually be.
The real baby carrots are the ones that are grown only till their baby phase. Then, they are pulled out and are not allowed to develop. They usually have greenery on them and can be bought from the produce section of the markets. However, here’s the bummer. The baby carrots that are commercially available are not baby carrots at all.
According to National Geographic, 46 per cent of the fresh produce of the carrots never makes it to the market due to its ugly shape. This is because people do not buy carrots, or for that matter any vegetable, that are misshapen. So, farmers can either sell them at a low price or they can go for this workaround – turn the misshapen carrots into baby carrots.
The farmers peel and cut the ugly looking carrots and dip them in chlorine. Chlorination is how the baby carrots get their whitish outer layer. Then they pack them and sell them off as baby carrots.
Dipping them in chlorine helps the farmers to preserve the color and crunch of the carrots. But chlorine is very bad and has very harmful repercussions when consumed. According to the US Council of Environmental Quality, drinking chlorinated water can raise one’s risk of cancer by 93 per cent! Imagine the risk that we are putting ourselves at when we consume chlorinated, chopped carrots as baby carrots.
The best way to minimize risk is to stop consuming baby carrots at all. However, if you have to use them at any cost, buy them from an organic source and dip them in a citric solution to make sure that they don’t harm you. Or, you can also chop your carrots and make your own baby carrots.