What's So Special About TikTok's Viral Carrot Salad?

TikTok is the place for food trends, and the latest recipe captivating users is being touted for the many health benefits it offers. The raw carrot salad is taking the social media platform by storm thanks to claims that it can enhance fertility and improve gut health. While recipes vary, all feature grated raw carrots, which are dressed in a healthy oil of your choice and are typically seasoned with black pepper, sea salt, or chili flakes. One recipe even includes a splash of vinegar and some soy sauce, which serves as a great salty-sour counterpoint to the subtle sweetness of the raw carrots.

Numerous content creators are displaying short clips of themselves making the salad, including one that features hashtags like #fertilitytreatment and #hormonalimbalance. Another video includes the hashtag #raypeat, referencing the person who is supposedly the originator of the diet. The same video also claims that the raw carrot salad is ideal for addressing a multitude of health issues, such as symptoms related to PMS and hormonal fluctuations. So, who is Ray Peat, and how did he develop his viral healthy eating plan?

Does the raw carrot diet actually correct hormone imbalances?

According to his website, Peat — who died in 2022 — held a Ph.D. in Biology and taught at a variety of colleges throughout North America. His study of hormones led him to believe that progesterone and other hormones act as "protectors of the body's structure" and can ward off estrogen's "harmful effects." He also promoted the idea that a particular fiber found in carrots attaches itself to estrogen to properly balance hormones. While carrots do offer plenty of benefits when it comes to health, Peat's claims regarding hormonal balances should be taken with a grain of salt.

As reported by CNBC, the digestive system does play a role in controlling how estrogen circulates throughout the body. For instance, increasing the consumption of fiber-rich foods can push the body to produce enzymes responsible for processing estrogen, which in turn ensures a better balance of the hormone. However, carrots and other fibrous veggies do not impact progesterone levels, so people with progesterone imbalances wouldn't see the same positive effects. Additionally, other types of fibrous vegetables are actually better for enzyme production related to the processing of estrogen, including broccoli and cauliflower.

What about other claims associated with the raw carrot diet?

Most TikTok videos featuring the raw carrot diet include claims about its benefits on digestive function. According to Healthline, this claim holds some weight thanks to the high fiber concentration in carrots. The presence of soluble fiber in carrots ensures that the good bacteria living within the gut receive essential fuel. The vegetable also contains insoluble fiber, which is a key component of regular bowel movements.


🥕 Viral Raw Carrot Salad demystified! Does it really help regulate hormones? Serves 4 Ingredients: ✔️3 to 4 medium carrots, peeled, grated with a Y peeler ✔️Drizzle if good quality olive oil ✔️Juice of one-half lemon, or to taste ✔️Zest of one-half lemon, or to taste ✔️1/4 cup fresh herbs (optional) ✔️Salt and pepper to taste ✔️1/3 cup toasted pepitas for serving (optional) 🥕For full nutritional information and instructions, and discussion if health benefits, head to my prfle for the link. #rawcarrotsalad #carrots #carrotsalad #vegansalad #cheaprecipe #easyveganrecipes

♬ simple. – coldbrew

Along with digestive benefits, carrots also contain plenty of important nutrients. They're a great source of beta carotene, potassium, and lutein and are associated with benefits like improved eye health and decreased disease risk as a result. Based on this information, raw carrot salad makes for a great addition to diets, as it offers an influx of important nutrients. However, some of the claims expressed on social media appear to be overstated, so the healthy recipe shouldn't be looked at as a cure-all or silver bullet for people experiencing hormonal imbalances.