Dr. Kathleen Jones
The Superfood You Should Try Today
Updated: Jan 11, 2022
If you’ve ever heard the phrase “Eat the rainbow”, you’ll know the different colors in fruits and veggies signal different nutrients. It’s true that the more colorful your food palate is, the more nourishing your diet will be. Brightly colored beets are a great example of a vegetable packed with nutrients from top to bottom - leaves to roots!
Health benefit #1: Antioxidants.
The rich red/purple color of beets comes from a type of plant pigment called betalains. A rare find among vegetables, betalains contain antioxidants known for several health benefits, including potent anti-inflammatory properties which can reduce the risk and/or the severity of high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, and asthma. Beet antioxidants also promote the growth and repair of healthy cells and are thought to fight heart disease and stop cancerous cell growth.
Health benefit #2: Nitrates.
Beets also contain naturally occurring nitrates - not to be confused with sodium nitrates, a harmful preservative found in many processed meats. During digestion, the nitrates from beets transform into nitric oxide. Nitric oxide strengthens your lungs and dilates your blood vessels, lowering blood pressure and promoting better circulation, especially during exercise. For this reason, some athletes drink beet juice as an all-natural alternative to sports drinks.
Health benefit #3: Vitamins.
Beets are a wonderful source of vitamins, including folate (vitamin B9), which is often recommended during pregnancy for its ability to boost cell growth and support a strong heart. Beets also contain potassium, vitamin A, vitamin C, manganese, and magnesium. Beets are also packed with fiber, which helps regulate blood sugar and cholesterol levels. Fiber also helps beneficial gut bacteria stay active, strengthening your immune system and optimizing digestion.
Beets grow best in the cooler temperatures of spring and fall. Roasting beets is a great way to bring out their natural sweetness, or you can toss them raw in a salad for an earthy-tasting crunch. Like all vegetables, beets contain the most nutrients when they are fresh, but eating canned/frozen beets or taking a supplement containing beetroot will provide you with many of the same health benefits. We’re always available to help you choose good supplements - call the office today or set up a virtual consult here https://www.eohinfo.com/schedule-appointment.