Beets, often known as beetroot, are a colorful and adaptable kind of vegetable. Their earthy flavor and scent are well-known. Beets not only offer a splash of color to your meal but are also loaded with nutrients such important vitamins, minerals, and plant compounds, many of which have therapeutic benefits. In addition, they taste great and are simple to incorporate into your diet in a variety of foods, including hummus, fries, salads, and balsamic roasted beets.
Lots of nutrients, not many calories
The nutritional profile of beets is outstanding. They provide a lot of essential vitamins and minerals while having little calories. They really have some of practically every vitamin and mineral your body need. Here is a list of the vitamins and minerals included in a 3.5-ounce (100-gram) portion of boiling beets.
- Calories: 44
- Protein: 1.7 grams
- Fat: 0.2 grams
- Carbs: 10 grams
- Fiber: 2 grams
- Folate: 20% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Manganese: 14% of the DV
- Copper: 8% of the DV
- Potassium: 7% of the DV
- Magnesium: 6% of the DV
- Vitamin C: 4% of the DV
- Vitamin B6: 4% of the DV
- Iron: 4% of the DV
The nutrient folate, which is particularly abundant in beets and important for growth, development, and heart health. They also have a healthy level of manganese, which has a role in the development of bones, the metabolism of nutrients, brain function, and other processes. Additionally, they contain a lot of copper, a crucial mineral needed for the creation of energy and the synthesis of several neurotransmitters.
helps in maintaining blood pressure
The capacity of beets to lower raised blood pressure, a significant risk factor for heart disease, has been extensively examined. Beetroot juice may actually considerably reduce systolic and diastolic blood pressure readings, according to several research. Instead of diastolic blood pressure, which is the pressure when your heart is relaxed, the impact seems to be more pronounced for systolic blood pressure, which is the pressure when your heart contracts. Additionally, raw beets can have a more powerful impact than cooked ones. This root vegetable’s high nitrate content is thought to be to blame for these blood pressure-lowering benefits. Dietary nitrates are transformed by your body into nitric oxide, a chemical that widens blood arteries and lowers blood pressure. Another excellent source of folate is beets. Numerous studies indicate that increasing your folate consumption might dramatically decrease blood pressure levels, despite the fact that research has produced conflicting outcomes. However, bear in mind that beets only temporarily lower blood pressure. In order to get their long-term heart-health advantages, you must frequently eat them.
improve athletic performance
Numerous studies indicate that dietary nitrates, such as those in beets, could improve athletic performance. Nitrates appear to have an impact on how well you move by increasing the effectiveness of the mitochondria, which are in charge of generating energy in your cells. According to one study, beetroot juice may increase endurance by extending the period before exhaustion, enhancing cardiorespiratory performance, and increasing athletes’ effectiveness. Beet juice has also been demonstrated to boost oxygen utilization by up to 20% during cycling and to enhance performance. It’s crucial to remember that after two to three hours of ingesting beets or beet juice, blood nitrate levels reach their highest. In order to get the most out of them and get their full advantages, it is recommended to drink them before working out or competing.
May help fight inflammation
The betalains pigments found in beets have several anti-inflammatory effects. Given that persistent inflammation has been linked to diseases including obesity, heart disease, liver disease, and cancer, this might be advantageous for many facets of health. Consuming 8.5 ounces (250 mL) of beet juice for two weeks dramatically decreased many inflammatory indicators, including C-reactive protein (CRP) and tumor necrosis factor-alpha, according to one research involving 24 persons with high blood pressure. Betalain capsules manufactured with beetroot extract have also been shown to lessen pain and suffering in persons with osteoarthritis, a disorder that causes inflammation in the joints, according to an older 2014 research. Beet juice and extract have also been demonstrated to lessen renal inflammation in rats given injections of harmful substances. More research in people is still required to discover whether eating beets in a balanced diet in moderation might have the same anti-inflammatory effects.
improve digestive health
Beets are a fantastic fiber source since they have 3.4 grams of fiber per cup of beetroot. Fiber skips the digestive process and enters the colon, where it feeds good bacteria in the digestive tract and gives stools more weight. This can maintain your regularity, improve your digestive health, and guard against illnesses like diverticulitis, IBS, and constipation. Additionally, fiber has been associated with a lower incidence of chronic illnesses such type 2 diabetes, colon cancer, and heart disease.
improve brain health
Age-related declines in mental and cognitive abilities can raise the risk of neurodegenerative diseases like dementia. Because nitrates in beets encourage blood vessel dilatation, which increases blood flow to the brain, they may enhance brain function. Beets have been specifically demonstrated to increase blood flow to the frontal lobe of the brain, which is connected to higher-order cognitive functions including decision-making and working memory. In addition, a study of persons with type 2 diabetes indicated that those who drank 8.5 ounces (250 mL) of beetroot juice daily for two weeks outperformed a control group by 4% in terms of response speed during a cognitive function test. To learn if beets could be used to enhance brain function and lower the risk of dementia in the general population, additional study is required.
contains anti-cancer properties
Several anti-cancer substances, including betaine, ferulic acid, rutin, kaempferol, and caffeic acid, are found in beetroot. Test-tube experiments have demonstrated that beetroot extract can reduce the proliferation and development of cancer cells, while further study is necessary in this area. Higher blood levels of betaine may be linked to a decreased chance of getting cancer, according to a number of previous research. It’s crucial to note that the majority of research on the subject have not employed beetroot, but rather isolated chemicals. Therefore, more study is required to determine the relationship between beetroot intake and the risk of developing cancer.
help balance energy intake
Beets offer a number of nutritious qualities that might make them a wonderful complement to a diet that is balanced. They are firstly rich in water and low in fat and calories, which can assist balance your calorie intake. Additionally linked to weight reduction is increasing your consumption of low-calorie meals like this root vegetable. They also include a significant quantity of protein and fiber while having little calories. These two nutrients may help individuals reach and keep a healthy weight. Beets’ high fiber content may also aid digestion, curb hunger, and increase feelings of fullness, all of which help you consume less calories overall. You may simply boost your intake of fruits and vegetables to enhance the quality of your diet by adding them to smoothies or other dishes.
Delicious and easy to include in your diet
In addition to being healthy, beets are also wonderfully tasty and simple to include in your diet. They may be juiced, roasted, steamed, or pickled. You may buy them canned and precooked for a practical choice. Even better, you may eat them raw, grated or thinly sliced. If at all possible, choose beets that feel weighty for their size and still have their fresh, unwilted green leafy tips. It is preferable to avoid cooking beets if you want to optimize their nitrate content because dietary nitrates are water-soluble. Here are some tasty and unique methods to increase your intake of beets:
- Salad. Grated beets make a flavorful and colorful addition to coleslaw or other salads.
- Dip. Beets blended with Greek yogurt and fresh garlic make a delicious, healthy, and colorful dip.
- Juice. Fresh beetroot juice is typically better than store-bought versions, which can be high in added sugar and contain only a small amount of beets.
- Leaves. You can cook and enjoy fresh beet leaves similarly to how you’d use spinach.
- Roasted. Wedge beetroots and toss them with a little olive oil, salt, pepper, and herbs or spices of your choice. Then, roast them in a 400°F (205°C) oven for 15–20 minutes until they’re tender.
Beets are incredibly nutrient-dense and packed with benefits for good health. They can enhance your athletic performance, promote the health of your brain, heart, and digestive system, be a fantastic supplement to a balanced diet, assist reduce inflammation, and perhaps even delay the growth of cancer cells. Best of all, adding beets to your diet is simple and tasty. They work well in salads, side dishes, smoothies, dips, and juices, for instance.