|There's no need to toss any part of this beautiful carrot!|
I personally have never noticed whether a peeled carrot is sweeter than a whole carrot. If you want a sweet carrot, buy local, fresh produce, and don't bother peeling them. Freshly grown produce that hasn't been shipped across the country, or the world, has amazing flavor, with nutrients as well as water content intact, making it crisp and delicious. In the same way that whole grains are better for you than something stripped down to only starches, I think fruits are better for you in their whole form than stripped down to only the sweet bits. In our family, anything we can eat whole, we do.
|The peels of potatoes help to make them a balanced food. Why waste them? The eyes do need to be cut out if the potato is sprouting, though, because the sprouts are mildly toxic.|
There's quite an array of fruits and vegetables that have an edible peel, and it's surprising how many of these commonly get stripped before consumption. Peaches, nectarines, carrots, potatoes, squash, kiwis, apples, cucumbers, and zucchinis... Sure, the peels add a bit of texture that might be weird at first, but chances are, if you're not a toddler, you can handle eating an apple with the skin on.
|The fuzz won't kill you.|
|Yes, you can even eat mandarin orange peels!|
Most oranges do not have such palatable peels. Mandarins are unusually mild and sweet; they don't produce the same strong oils as other types of oranges. Other varieties of orange peels are quite bitter, but can at least be used in teas.
|A baked delicata squash can be eaten right along with its peel, or the squash can be scooped out and then the peel can be filled with sliced tomato, sprouts, avocado, and mayonnaise for a bread-free sandwich!|
If you're eating the peel of anything, one caveat is to make sure you're eating organic. That is, after all, where the bulk of pesticides and junk will reside if your produce has been sprayed. If you are eating sprayed fruits or veggies, wash very well, or peel if you must. Peels are porous, though, so sprayed fruit will not be completely free of pesticides even after peeling. Eat organic, local food whenever you can.
Also, I should add that while I've heard of people who love to eat mangoes with the peel, I am allergic to an enzyme, urushiol, which is present in mango peels. Urushiol is the same enzyme that enables poison ivy and poison oak to give people contact rashes. For years I actually avoided eating mangoes because I didn't want to risk the blistering rash contact with the skin gave me. However, I've learned that if I carefully peel them, I can still enjoy the fruit. I can touch the peel with my hands, just not with my mouth. Not everyone is allergic to urushiol, but if you have ever had a rash from poison ivy or oak, you should avoid eating mango skins.
We still peel bananas, since they seem super bitter. If you can eat banana peels somehow, please let me know! Some peels just are horrid, like avocado skins. I'm not encouraging you to eat anything disgusting, after all ;) Trust your gut, but don't be afraid to try new, whole foods!
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