Who do you think you are kidding, Mr Wainwright…

Someone’s clearly forget to tell the Guardian’s northern editor, Martin Wainwright, that the war’s over…

The medical properties of carrots – including the boost they provide to night vision, which led to them being fed to RAF pilots during the second world war – can be enhanced by the way in which they are cooked, researchers say.

…the Second World War.

For the record, eating carrots has no effect whatsoever on your night vision.

The suggestion that they do originated as a propaganda story during World War 2, which was spread around to conceal the real reason for effectiveness of British nightfighters against German bombers…


As for carrots having ‘medical properties’, this is only true if you happen to be suffering from a severe vitamin A deficiency, one of the first signs of which is often nyctalopia – night blindness. Sever deficiencies of this kind are, however, rare outside the developing world unless they occur as a secondary characteristic of another, entirely separate, condition or are self-induced by dieting.

Vitamin A is, however, toxic if taken in very high doses over a period of time and can lead to nausea, jaundice, irritability, anorexia (but not the eating disorder, anorexia nervosa), vomiting, blurry vision, headaches, hairloss, muscle and abdominal pain and weakness, drowsiness and even altered mental status.

Moreover, an excessive intake of Vitamin A can have a particular marked effect on a developing foetus, disrupting cephalic neural cell activity. Foetuses have been found to be particularly sensitive of the effects of Vitamin during organogenesis, which, in humans, is initiated during the period from 3 to 8 weeks gestation, affecteding the development of the body’s internal organs.

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