Your online resource

for all things culinary

HOME Search this Site All Recipes Special Sections Articles &  Resources Kitchen Equipment Food & Health Growing Food Directories

Missing an Ingredient ?




Jump to:-    What is  Beta-Carotene?  | When was Beta-Carotene discovered | What does Beta-Carotene do?  | Good food sources of Beta-Carotene



Go to:-     5-A-day Vegetables 5-A-day Fruit  |  Food and Health Main Page

Calories  | Carbohydrates  |  Dietary Fibre  | Minerals | Nutritional RequirementsVitamins



What is Beta-Carotene?


Beta-carotene is a molecule which is part of the carotenoid  family of chemicals found in many fruit and vegetables, as well as some animal products such as egg yolks.



When was Beta-Carotene discovered


Beta-carotene was discovered in 1831 by professor Heinrich Wilhelm Ferdinand Wackenroder who was the first person to isolate the natural orange-yellow pigment in carrots and who named the term 'carotene' however it wasn't until 1919 that Harry Steenbock (1886-1967) suggested that there could be a relationship between beta-carotene and vitamin A.


How the Body Uses Beta-Carotene


Beta-carotene is also known as provitamin A, because it is one of the most important precursors of vitamin A in the human diet, that is to say its molecules are converted into vitamin A by the body.


The breakdown of beta-carotene occurs in the walls of the small intestine. The resulting retinol is stored in the liver.  If you eat more beta-carotene than the body needs, less of it is converted, and the rest is stored, however too much beta-carotene can make you turn yellow.


Beta-Carotene also has antioxidant properties which may help in preventing cancer and other diseases.


Good Food Sources for Beta Carotene


Beta-carotene can be found in  a variety of foods including yellow fruit and vegetables such as sweet potatoes, carrots, sweetcorn, squash, swede (rutabaga) and melons and in some green vegetables such as  kale, spinach and broccoli.


Back to Top

 Follow us 





 Sign up for Free E-mailings

I still haven't found what I'm looking for


Try our search facility. Type in your main ingredient (s) or whatever you happen to have available in your store cupboard or fridge and allow us to whisk you up a recipe in seconds!




For full advanced search tips visit our main search page via the red "search this site" button at the top of the page


About Us  |  Contact Us  |   Advertise |    Private Privacy  |   Media Resources  |  Links  |  Sitemap  |  Printing Recipes  |  


Abbreviations on this site  




This Web Site was designed and created by Copyright 2000 to date [Recipes4us] All rights reserved.

 Some Photos