Beetroot is the taproot of the beet plant, scientifically known as Beta Vulgaris, round in shape and usually dark red in colour. Beets are ancient, historic food that grew naturally along coastline in North Africa, Asia and Europe. It’s now grown in Nigeria and can be found in several local markets. It is mostly grown for its edible taproots and leaves which apart from being used as food, can be used as a medicine and as a food colourant.
Nutritional values of Beetroot
- Beetroot is low in sodium and fat, a good source of folate(folic acid) and hence support mental health, emotional health and helps reduce the risk of birth defects.
- Rich in Vitamin c and Fiber which enhances immune boosting.
- It is high in essential minerals like potassium for healthy nerves and muscle function.
- Beets are also rich in magnesium
Beetroots ensure a relatively rapid healing of wounds ad are also known to be effective against the odor of garlic. An increase in the resistance force of the human body is to be expected and particularly good effects can be seen in the regular consumption of beetroot for skin problems such as;
Beetroots are used as a treatment for numerous health conditions such as
- Lowers Blood Pressure:
Drinking beet juice may help to lower blood pressure. Studies found that drinking one glass of beet juice lowered systolic blood pressure by an average of 4-5 points. This is because beets have nitrates, which are converted to nitric oxide, in the body. Nitric oxide helps to relax and dilate blood vessels, improve blood flow and lowers blood pressure.
Drinking beet juice can benefit individuals at risk of cardiovascular disease.
- Help prevent cancer:
Beetroot extract prevents cancer of the breast, skin, colon and prostate because of the presence of betanin in it. When beetroot juice is taken along with carrot extract, it is found to aid the treatment of leukemia. Research has shown that beetroot extract reduced multi – organ tumor formations in various animal model and humans.
The betanin pigment in beets supports the body’s detoxification process, by assisting the bowel movement in which the broken down toxins can be excreted from the body.
- Boost energy levels:
Studies have shown that beetroot makes the muscles more fuel – efficient, thereby enhancing stamina. Beets contain a significant amount of carbohydrates that provides fuel for energy and prolonged sport activities
- Prevent Strokes:
The deficiency of potassium in the body increases the risk of stroke. Therefore, presence of potassium in the body reduces the risk of blood clot, and other plague that may have built up along the walls of the blood vessels. Clots are what eventually lead to heart attacks and strokes. So beets and their potassium content is quite a health booster!
- Prevent Fibroid:
Drinking beetroot juice can stop fibroid cell growth and also shrink already grown fibroid if taken over time.
- Helps treat Insomnia( lack of sleep)
Regular intake of beet juice has shown to cure / prevent sleeplessness as it is known as a natural sedative.
- Beetroot juice also prevents menstrual disorders and painful menstruation.
How to incorporate beetroot into your diet
- Beetroot could be taken as juice
- You can shred raw beets on salad
- You can bake beets.
Preparation of beet juice
1 medium size lemon (for a refreshing taste)
Wash the above, cut in small pieces and place in a blender to make fine juice. Sieve, drink and enjoy the yummy juice.
Excessive intake of beetroot may change your urine colour to pink which is totally harmless.
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