By: Amanda Froelich,
You’ve had them pickled – slimy, curious looking chunks of blood-red vegetable peering at you…and you’ve been forced to eat them plain – earth dirt, anyone? Relatives may have good intent, pushing the root vegetable at younger nieces and nephews, but those who don’t know how to prepare the beet root not only walk away in disgust, but miss out on the valuable health benefits offered.
A dark purple-red color, this vegetable packs ambitious vitamins, minerals, and is a preventative aid for many modern diseases. The following reasons illuminate why one should give beets another chance, and how to consume them for optimal satisfaction.
1. ZERO Fat
Beets have zero Trans Fat and Saturated Fat, the well-known contributors to heart disease and Diabetes. Being low in calories, too, beets have the benefit of satisfying hunger while tickling your sweet tooth with natural sugars.
Choose a fresh beet at the market and it’s not likely to set you back substantially; root vegetables in general are of the more inexpensive whole foods to purchase at your farmer’s market or grocery store.
High in healthful carbohydrates, beets are a dynamic source of energy that can be utilized over a period of time as the body digests the fiber and utilizes all the nutrients included.
4. Mineral Mine
Beets are high in sodium, magnesium, calcium, iron, and phosphorous! These minerals are essential for supporting healthy muscles and bone structure.
5. Prevent Cancer
Studies show beets are especially beneficial for reducing the risk of cancer, notably colon cancer. The component Betacyanin is the pigment that gives beets their red flavor, and is the strongest aid in preventing/counteracting this disastrous disease.
6. Vitamins for Sight
The rich orange, red, and purple in beets are some of the flavanoids which are beneficial for aiding the body’s regeneration.Vitamin A, C, and Niacin are all abundant in beets!
7. Leaves are Edible!
Every part of the beet is a gold mine of health-promoting nutrients; the leaves of raw beets have been eaten since Roman era, and Hippocrates advocated the use of leaves for the binding and healing of wounds. Rich in vitamin A and K, you can add them to a stir-fry if you can’t stomach them raw, or even include them in a green smoothie for optimal nutrition.
8. Available Year Round
You need not miss out on the extraordinary benefits of beets (I know, you’re bummed) – they’re available all year round!
9. Heart Healthy
Being low in fat, high in nutrients, very hydrating, easy to digest, and full of beneficial compounds, it has also been shown that beets help prevent heart disease and other lifestyle-related illnesses. Including them in a colorful salad or in a juice, you’ll be radiating health before you know it.
10 Easy to Use!
The following three examples show how easy it is to include beets in your diet. They can also taste good!
Using a dehydrator or an oven, you can easily create beautiful, crispy beet chips that will allow you to absorb the many benefits…and enjoy the vegetable at the same time! A great recipe can be found here.
Like carrots, use a grater and shred some beets into your salad! It will heighten the colors and your nutritional intake.
An easy and delicious concoction includes juicing the following:
- ½ Beet
- 2-3 Carrots
- 2 Apples
- ½ Lime
- ¼ tbsp knob of Ginger
There you have it, 10 Reasons to Eat the Beet! Enjoy this extraordinary vegetable which has amazing potential to support your best health.