Keeping our health and wellness in mind is important. Whether it’s the foods we eat, the drinks we consume, or the vitamins we ingest, there are a lot of points to consider when trying to get — and stay — healthy. So, what are some foods and supplements we should consider? According to science, beets. But what exactly is a beet, what types of supplements are available that contain beets, and what are the benefits of adding beets to your diet? Let’s find out.
The beet, also known as beetroot, has been used as a medicinal supplement since Roman times. It is low in calories but contains a variety of minerals and vitamins – including fiber, folate, potassium, vitamin B6, iron, and manganese.
There are multiple ways to consume beets, and some are more effective at delivering key nutrient benefits than others. For example, it’s not recommended that you boil beets as their dietary nitrates are water soluble and can be lost during the cooking process.
In addition to their nutritional value, beets also contain a large concentration of nitrates, which are known to lower blood pressure. When consumed, the dietary nitrates in beets are converted to nitric oxide. This molecule helps dilate the body’s blood vessels, causing a drop in blood pressure. With heart disease, heart failure, heart attack, and strokes as leading causes of death worldwide, and high blood pressure as one of the leading risk factors of those diseases, adding beetroot sure can’t hurt.
Studies have also shown that dietary nitrates may also heighten athletic ability by improving oxygen use and increasing the time before exhaustion. In addition, an increase in oxygen efficiency can help improve mental and cognitive function. Not to mention, by helping dilate the blood vessels, the nitrates are increasing blood flow to the brain.
Beetroot also contains pigments called betalains, a nutrient that has been shown to provide protection against oxidative stress. Though oxidation is a normal process within the body, oxidative stress occurs when there are more free radical cells that can be controlled by antioxidants. These free radicals play a major role in the development of illnesses such as cancer, autoimmune disorders, cataracts, rheumatoid arthritis, and neurodegenerative diseases. By increasing your body’s amount of betalains, you’re helping protect it from harm.
One of the easiest ways to consume the nutrient-rich beetroot is through a powder supplement. Derived from the root of the beet plant, beetroot powder condenses all of the vitamins and minerals found in the beet and its leaves (also known as beet greens) into an easy-to-take supplement.
Beets are not only nutritious and help increase important vitamins in your body, but they’re also delicious and easy to add to a variety of dishes. Beets can be roasted, steamed, pickled, or roasted. You can create dishes such as beetroot salad, blend beets with Greek yogurt to create a delicious and healthy dip, cook beetroot leaves to enjoy as a side dish (they’re similar to spinach), or drink beet juice as a snack or addition to any meal.
Beets also pair well with other supplements in juices, such as turmeric. By combining these two superfoods, you can enjoy a healthy dose of vitamins and minerals with added anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory benefits. Ready to take your supplement use to the next level with beetroot and turmeric? Visit Essential Core Nutrition to shop a great selection of high-quality nutritional supplements.