Beta-carotene is a type of carotenoid. Carotenoids are fat soluble plant compounds produced by plants to protect themselves from the damaging effects of free radicals.
What is Carotene?
It is an orange pigment (vegetable dye) that plays an important role in photosynthesis. This plant compound gives the orange color of carrots and other orange vegetables and fruits.
There are over 600 carotenoids in nature, but perhaps only 50 of this western man’s kitchen, and even 14 of these fifty, are in the blood that is absorbed during digestion. The main dietary carotenes are beta-carotene and alpha-carotene (found in carrots), lutein (kale, broccoli and spinach), and lycopene (tomato). Dietary carotenoids are very important because of their physiological effects.
So, this compound belongs to a larger group of carotenoids found in a wide variety of fruits and vegetables. Based on this, a healthy diet, based on consuming a lot of vegetables and fruits, can provide the body with the right amount of food, without the need to buy a variety of beta-carotene supplements, but can prepare our skin for the harmful rays of our daily diet. Our healthy body can produce vitamin A from beta-carotene exactly as it needs it. And Vitamin A is known to help maintain normal skin and mucous membranes and maintain normal vision. Before you go on vacation, get your own dose of beta-carotene, as it will take a week or two for protection to develop!
Since it is a fat soluble substance, if you are eating orange vegetables or consuming it as a dietary supplement, it is worthwhile to consume some fat or oil as it can achieve a much higher absorption rate. It is advisable to evaporate the carotene-containing foods or fry them in fat, as this causes the cell walls to expand and the carotene to be removed and thus better absorbed.