Food – The Unbeatable Beet

Beet or beetroot has a bulbous, dark red root that may be eaten as a vegetable in a variety of ways. Beetroots are rich in essential vitamins and minerals, making them an excellent addition to your diet. Although commonly a beautiful reddish-purple hue, beets also come in varieties that feature white, yellow, orange, striped and even rainbow colored roots.

Beets pack a number of health benefits:

  • “Beets contain zero trans fat and zero saturated fat. They are also low calorie.
  • Beets are high in carbohydrates, which means they are a great instant energy source. They can be regarded as body fuel.
  • Beets contain folic acid, which is necessary for the production and maintenance of new cells. This is especially important for pregnant woman or anyone undergoing physical healing.
  • Studies have shown that betacyanin, the pigment that gives beets their red color, helps inhibit the formation of cancer-causing compounds and is protective against colon and stomach cancer. Beets have been used to help get rid of tumors and to aid in supporting people with blood diseases and leukemia.
  • Medical studies have also shown that including beets in a diet helps protect the body against heart disease.
  • Beets have been shown to help cleanse the blood, cleanse the colon and strengthen the gallbladder and liver.
  • Some people have used beets to treat and cure boils, abscesses and even acne.
  • Beets are one of the best sources of lutein and zeaxanthin, highly beneficial for eye health.
  • Beets also contain betaine, which enhances serotonin production in the brain.
  • Beets are an excellent source of fiber and magnesium, which helps make and maintain RNA and DNA cells and prevent anemia.
  • Beets contain sodium, magnesium, calcium, iron and phosphorous. They are considered a fiber food and contain vitamins A and C as well as niacin.
  • Beets also contain potassium, which is necessary for building muscle and regulating the heart’s electrical activity, and manganese, which helps maintain muscle and nerve function, build bone strength, regulate blood sugar levels, and promote a healthy immune system.”

Beets may be enjoyed in several ways: grate them raw over salads; steam; roast in the oven, cut in chunks and top a tossed salad, adding a favorite dressing; juice raw with other vegetables for a healthy drink or use diced or grated in soups. Borscht, a very popular vegetable soup made of beets is a delicious favorite in Poland, Russia, Germany and other European menus.