For the Love of Beets
Find a way to fall in love with beets because they have so many proven health benefits, they even took us by surprise! Beets are a compact powerhouse of phytonutrients, antioxidants, vitamins and minerals but their advantages are more than just being vitamin packed. They also contain lutein and zeaxanthin, two carotenoids that are beneficial for eye health. (macular degeneration and
cataracts) Beet root has a high concentration of naturally occurring nitrates, which are converted in the body to nitric oxide, a molecule that relaxes and widens blood vessels and affects how efficiently cells use oxygen. It is for this very reason that consuming beetroot juice every day has shown promise for lowering both systolic and diastolic blood pressure. There are more advantages to the increased blood flow than just heart health. The increase of oxygen in your blood has shown benefits for brain health and even in endurance with athletes, especially when consumed before the activity. Beets contain pigments called “Betalains” that play a role in cell protection and helping the body to fight inflammation by inhibiting the production of specific enzymes (cyclo-oxygenase enzymes), which are partially responsible in creating the inflammatory responses. A daily dose of beets can detoxify the liver and keep things regular. Beets are high in fibre. Beet fibre moves through the intestines undigested, (insoluble fibre) and soaks up water along the way, adding bulk to your stool, providing a cleansing effect on the large intestine. It is the same cleansing effect of beets that helps to lower triglycerides (a type of fat) in the blood, which if left uncontrolled can lead to fatty liver and heart disease. Beets are a great addition to any diet plan, not just for the cleansing effect but they are high in potassium, which is a critical mineral in electrolyte balance and many diets such as the Keto Diet can play havoc on the body’s electrolyte balance. (Electrolytes are required for proper nerve and muscle function.)
How to Get Your Daily Dose of Beets
For all the significant advantages of beets, the likelihood of being able to eat them every day in their raw form, which is where the most health benefits come from, is improbable. They are time-consuming to cook and extremely messy to prepare. Leaving your choice of beets to come from ready-made juice or already canned. (the canned versions tend to be overcooked, over sugared and contain other non-essentials to health.) You can, however, choose to get your daily dose of beets through a powdered supplement “Prairie Naturals Organic Reds”.
Each serving contains 2000 mg of Organic Beet Root. To put this into perspective one cup of sliced raw beets equals about 80 mg and to see the health benefits you should be consuming at least four times this amount. Prairie Naturals Organic Reds has you covered with one serving, but they also increased the supplement offering by including other superfoods such as Pomegranates, Goji Berries, Grapeseed, Carrots, Blueberries, Strawberries, Raspberries & Cranberries. So, you not only get the fantastic benefits of beets, you get the benefits of the other ingredients and it tastes great. No matter how great beets are, taken in high amounts every day can have some unwanted effects. First, the colour of your urine and stools may turn red or pinkish after eating beets. It is harmless and even has a name, known as “beeturia.” If you have low blood pressure, consuming beetroot juice daily can cause your blood pressure to drop too low and may also affect blood sugar (caution if taking medication for blood sugar). If you are prone to “calcium oxalate kidney stones,” do not consume large amounts of beets daily as beets are high in oxalates (naturally occurring) that may form crystals in your urine which could lead to stones if not passed. (an issue if you are prone to or have kidney disease).
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