Health Benefits of Beets
What is a Beet?
The beetroot, more commonly known as simply the beet, is an amazing source of vitamins and minerals that provides a healthy dose of excellent sugar for our body. Beetroots are cultivated for their edible taproots, which are typically consumed roasted, boiled, grilled, cooked, or raw as a key ingredient for a meal or salad. Beets are very populary for culinary purposes in North America, Central America, Europe, and India. The green, leafy portion of beets can also be consumed but the leaves offer little nutritional value compared to the taproot.
A single serving of raw beets, roughly 135-grams worth, contains only 55-calories while offering high levels of beneficial vitamins, minerals, protein and dietary fiber. This one serving of beets contains 11% the daily recommended value (DV) of vitamin C, 37% DV of folate, 5% DV of vitamin B6, 13% DV of potassium, 22% Dv of manganese, 8% DV of magnesium, and 6% DV of iron. Beets are also high in dietary fiber and protein with a single serving containing 3.8-grams of dietary fiber and 2.2-grams of protein.
Benefits of Beets
Lowers the Risk of Cancer: Beets are very rich in a a wide array of powerful antioxidants. Beets contain a high level of betalain pigment, a type of antioxidant that gives beets is rich red color while also benefiting the body. Other types of antioxidants that beets contain are manganese, vitamin C and folate. All of the different phytonutrients makes beets a very unique antioxidant provider compared to other vegetables. This high level of antioxidants helps locate and fight harmful free-radicals that roam the body causing permanent damage that often results in cancer.
Anti-Inflammatory: The many different phytonutrients found in beets has been shown to work as an anti-inflammatory compound. The phytonutrients, specifically betanin, isobetanin, and vulgaxanthin, have been shown to inhibit the cyclo-oxygenase enzyme. This enzyme works by generating messages that trigger the body's inflammation response. Although there are times our bodies need to send inflammation messages, there are times when it can also be harmful to our bodies. Inhibiting the cyclo-oxygenase enzyme can be very beneficialwhen dealing with type-2 diabetes or certain heart diseases.
High Fiber Content: Beets are an excellent source of fiber, but the kind of fiber that is provided by Beets is different from the Fiber you might get from other foods. The type of fiber found in Beets is comparable to the fiber found in carrots that is known to keep the digestive tract and cardiovascular system healthy. The combination of fiber and antioxidant content results in beets being able to lower the risks associated with colon cancer.
Lowers Blood Pressure: Beets have a high level of nitrate, which is known to effectively lower blood pressure levels. By lowering blood pressure, beets also aid overall cardiovascular health. Studies have show that blood pressure levels can drop as quickly as 1-hour after drinking just two-cups of beetroot juice.
Whether you decide to eat this nutritious vegetable raw, boiled, grilled or pickled, beets are a great way to keep your body strong and healthy. Beets can fight and reduce inflammation, reduce the risks associated with various types of cancers, and drinking two-cups of beetroot juice can lower blood pressure levels as quickly as within 1-hour.