The Health Benefits of Beetroot and Beetroot Juice
Beetroot or beets have a long history. Dating back to ancient Greek, Roman and Arabian times, beets had been used for many reasons. It was considered to be a luxury vegetable, something delicious to eat. However, this and other types of food went further than giving these ancient people a full and satisfied stomach. How did these people survive by living healthy lives when there were no prescription and over-the-counter medications? One of the reasons is that these people ate foods that were natural. There were no fast-food or processed food back in those days. Their simple way of living and eating allowed them to live long, healthy lives. The beet is no exception. The ancient people respected it not only as a delicious vegetable but also for its many health benefits and healing properties.
With the name beetroot, it is obvious that beets are root vegetables. They are not to be confused with radishes, even though they are similar in color. Beets do tend to be slightly larger than radishes. They also are a darker shade of red and can even be purple in color. Where the radish is white on the inside, beets are red on the inside. Beetroot is a vegetable that can either be eaten cold or cooked. It can be added with other vegetables such as in a salad or eaten alone.
The good news about beets is that you can eat them raw or cooked and not have to worry about losing the nutritional nutrients, vitamins and minerals. Most other vegetables lose these when they are cooked.
Beets are an excellent source of copper. One of the reasons why some people get gray hair early in their lives is because they do not have enough copper in their diets.
Beets are high in magnesium and manganese. People who suffer from diabetes will benefit from eating beets because both of these help lower blood sugar. This mineral also plays a role in reducing water retention and protects the liver from lipidosis or adipose dystrophy.
Beets contain antioxidant properties which we need to protect our bodies against free radicals. “Free radicals is a term often used to describe damaged cells that can be problematic. They are “free” because they are missing a critical molecule, which sends them on a rampage to pair with another molecule” (WebMD). The damaged cells will attack the good ones and damage them as well. Beets play a key role of destroying the bad cells before they cause any further damage. Even your brain cells can be protected because of these antioxidants. By including beets in your daily diet, you are reducing the chance of getting Alzheimer’s or senile dementia as you age.
Beets contain betaine, which is an excellent anti-inflammatory property. If you suffer from rheumatoid arthritis including beets in your daily diet helps reduce the inflammation that is caused by this disease.
Our bodies need folic acid in order to have healthy cells. Expecting women need this acid to help prevent birth defects in their children. Beets are high in folic acid.
Beets are an excellent source of dietary fiber. With three grams per serving, you are promoting excellent intestinal health when you include beets in your daily diet. If you suffer from constipation or want to prevent it, eating beets helps keep you regular.
When you have a daily diet that does not contain enough potassium, you run the risk of getting high blood pressure. Even if you have a healthy blood pressure, you want to be able to maintain it by eating food that is high in potassium. Since beets are high in potassium, including it in your daily diet is a heart healthy choice for you.
Beetroot Juice Health Benefits
While beetroot is very nutritious in whatever form you consume them, beetroot juice is very valuable for your well-being.
Beetroot juice helps stimulate the production of the red blood cells in the body. An anemic person benefits from drinking this juice because it is high in iron. Not only does this drink increase the number of red blood cells and make them stronger, it improves the circulation of blood and oxygen throughout the entire circulation system. This also gives people, especially athletes, more energy and stamina because of its high levels of carbohydrates. With its reputation of being a natural energy drink, it is healthier to drink a glass of beetroot juice than to guzzle a Monster.
Beetroot juice boosts the immune system because it contains flavonoids and vitamin C. If you have a cold or the flu, drinking beetroot juice can help fight the symptoms. You can even prevent yourself from getting sick in the first place by including beetroot juice in your daily diet.
Since beetroot juice contains lutein, your eyes can be protected from conditions such as macular degeneration and cataracts. Beets are also high in zinc. This mineral also is an excellent aid to eyesight and helps prevent myocardial infarction.
Beetroot juice is good for your heart since it is a natural blood thinner. When you have high levels of bad cholesterol in your bloodstream, your arteries get clogged up with fatty buildup. This causes high blood pressure, because your heart has to work faster to move the blood through the arteries. This in turn can lead to a heart attack or stroke. Drinking beetroot juice can reduce the amount of bad cholesterol and dissolve the calcium deposits that are responsible for hardening of the arteries, or atherosclerosis. Therefore it also can reduce the chances of getting a heart attack or stroke.
Beetroot juice is an excellent tool in weight loss because it contains iodine. This helps make the thyroid function effectively. One of the main causes of obesity is when the thyroid is not working as it should. Even people who follow a 1200 calorie diet and have a under productive thyroid will find it difficult to lose weight. Therefore, drinking beetroot juice will speed up your metabolism. When your metabolism is increased, more fat will be burned.
Drinking beetroot juice helps clean your body of toxins. It is effective in flushing the kidneys and liver of stones. It is an excellent cleanser if you suffer from:
- Food Poisoning
Drinking beetroot juice can also help reverse the damage bought on to the liver from alcohol abuse.
While some grocery stores carry beetroot juice, it is more available at health food stores. It can also be found online on sites such as Amazon and EBay. It may be easier to make your own beetroot juice if you are unable to find it locally. All you need is a juice extractor such as the Nutri Bullet. Cut up some beets and blend them with two oranges to make a delicious drink.
While some people can drink beetroot juice by itself, others find that the taste is too strong. Therefore, it is best to mix this juice with another liquid. One delicious combination is beettoot juice and carrot juice. Another choice is adding honey.
Before drinking beetroot juice, it is important to talk to your doctor since it can interact with any other medications and vitamins you are taking.
If you start including beets and beetroot juice in your diet, you may notice that your urine will turn a light shade of pink. Do not worry! This is just a harmless side effect because of the red pigment of beets.