BEET || BEETROOT
from the Beta vulgaris
Beets are the type of vegetable that either grow on people after being awesomely prepared or will forever stay in the never-cook category. I’m here to tell you that beets are amazing — for a whole host of other reasons than roasting them under the broiler with mushrooms, garlic, olive oil, and some sea salt. Yum. They originate on the Atlantic and Mediterranean coasts of Africa and Europe and are in season during the Summer and Autumn. They’re easily grown in the home garden.
Beetroots are high in folate, magnesium, and fiber along with being a good source of vitamin B6 and C. The phenols in beets — which provide awesome antioxidant properties — are a perfect pair to the betalains, water-soluble plant pigments that give beets their vibrant, staining color, not mention being incredible beneficial to the human body. If you’re lucky to eat some of the beet greens, you’ll find your system energized with more fiber, vitamins A, B6, C, K, & E, thiamine, and riboflavin, present with high levels of magnesium, potassium, calcium, the ever-essential iron, and copper. Plus a whole host of other nutrients that would turn this page into just a list. But just one more… In very simple terms, beets when digested, run through the system scooping up toxins, allowing them to become water soluble in the body and neutralized so as not to harm the beneficial properties. This allows them to easily pass through the system, leaving the body stock full of nutrients, free of impurities. Umm hello! I’ll take one at every meal please.
Nutritional Benefits |
Per one cup raw – 136g – only some of many incredible benefits include
- Fiber // 4g fiber
- Carbohydrates // 13g carbohydrates (9g from sugar)
- Vitamin C // 11% DV
- Folate // 34% DV
- Magnesium // 8% DV
- Potassium // 13% DV
- Manganese // 28% DV
- Phytonutrients // betalains | carotenoids (beta-carotene)
What It Can Help Me With |
- Anticancer properties
- Reduced oxidation and inflammation in obese women
- In an animal study, beetroot juice was protective against esophageal cancer
How I Can Use It |
note || be sure to wash and scrub beets — since they grow in the ground, they often are coated in sand and dirt, making it less than appetizing to juice or add to a smoothie and get the granules stuck in your teeth
Roasted || helps best to preserve the folate my favorite go-to recipe is roasted with olive oil, salt, and pepper, with button mushrooms under the broiler and then tossed with spinach for a warm salad.
Steamed || this way is perfect for just cooking them up to have on hand for the week. awesome with brown rice, sweet potatoes, some hummus, and greens.
Raw || when it’s not so cold and you’re looking for a simple but nutritious option, try adding raw shredded beets to shredded cabbage, and apples with apple cider vinegar and honey for a summer coleslaw option
And don’t forget: pickled, sliced, added to juices, tossed into smoothies*, etc.
* speaking of smoothies — stay tuned for a beautiful recipe next week. just in time to treat yourself for Valentine’s Day ;-) .