Jul 15, 2012

Beet Benefits

Beets are one of those foods as I kid I swore I'd never eat.  What I've learned is, never say "never".  I am a beet addict in my 30s.  They are pretty much a staple food in my home.  Two reasons for this - they are incredibly nutritious and surprisingly versatile. 

On a nutritious level, beets rank pretty high and are considered to be a  “cardiovascular health” friendly root vegetable. Certain unique pigment antioxidants present in beets as well as top greens have found to offer protection against coronary artery disease and stroke, lower cholesterol levels in the body and have anti-aging effects.  They are low in calories and low in fat and offer a punch of Vitamin C, iron, potassium, magnesium, and manganese. 

When buying beets, buy them with the tops still attached and preferably locally grown or organic.  When you get them home, cut the tops off, wash thoroughly and chop for salad greens.  Add some spinach leaves to the mix for a nice salad.  I usually roast some of the beets in the oven to add to my salad as well. 

Another option is to take a quarter of a raw beet and add it to your morning smoothie.  Instead of a green smoothie, it will be hot pink!  Just an fyi - about 10-15% of the population are unable to break down the natural pigments of beets, therefore, you may experience some pink color your urine, which is completely safe.  Do not be alarmed.  :)

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