How WW2 British Pilots Used Carrots to Keep Their Defense Secret

The Second World War was inarguably one of the major turning points in aerial warfare. The endless bombings wiped out cities in a matter of minutes, but the real nightmare came in the form of night missions or bomb droppings during the night, leaving little to no time for the cities to recover. The war between Great Britain and Nazi Germany affected the British adversely. Not only were they out of men to fight, but there weren’t enough resources to keep them in the war for long. They had to find a way to succeed in night missions, but the major challenge was the limited vision of pilots at night.

At some point, the Royal Air Force of Britain developed radar technology that helped them locate enemy airplanes at night with significantly improved precision. Their own airplanes started to be built in such a way that they were hard to detect from afar.

The sudden improvement in the British forces' movement during the night missions is said to have caught their German counterparts off guard. The spies were tasked with figuring out the ruse. The British preempted this, and they spread a rumour to keep Nazi Germany from uncovering their secret. They started a propaganda campaign stating how the British fighter pilots started loading on carrots to improve their eyesight at night. That's right, they let Nazi Germany believe that their improved night vision was due to beta-carotene in carrots. Now, not much is known about the diets of these fighter pilots, and not many carrots might have actually made it to their plates, but the propaganda certainly helped them guard their secret for a long time.

Do Carrots Help Improve Vision?

Certainly yes. If not enough to give you super night vision, it is more than enough to keep eye-related diseases like glaucoma at bay and improve overall eye health. Carrots contain beta-carotene, a substance that the body converts to vitamin A. It is a vital nutrient for eye health. The winter vegetable is also versatile. If raw carrots are too boring for you, you can blend them in juices, soups, and smoothies to make the most of their health benefits.