The health benefits of beet
The health benefits of beet include anemia, digestion, constipation, piles, blood circulation, kidney disorders, skin care, dandruff, gall bladder disorders, cancer, and heart diseases.
Beets or beetroots, as they are called, belong to the Chenopodiaceous family. Health benefits of beet roots can be attributed to their richness in nutrients, vitamins and minerals. They are a source of carotenoids and lutein/zeaxanthin. Beets are also rich in dietary fiber, vitamin C, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus. Beet is a source of beneficial flavonoids called anthycyanins. They are very low in calories but have the highest sugar content of all vegetables. It is also used to make refined sugar.
Beetroot is also added as an ingredient to salads, soups and pickles and also used as a natural coloring agent. Even though beets are available throughout the year they are still seasonal vegetables.
The roots and leaves of beets have plenty of medicinal uses like:
Good for heart: Beet fiber helps to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides by increasing the level of HDL. High level of triglycerides increases the risk for heart related problems. The presence of the nutrient betaine lowers the levels of homocysteine in the body which can be harmful to the blood vessels. Thus, consumption of beetroot helps to prevent cardiovascular diseases.
Avoids birth defects: Beet is good for pregnant women since it is a source of B vitamin folate which helps in the development of infant’s spinal column. Deficiency of folate could lead to the condition called neural tube defect.
Prevent certain cancers: Studies revealed that beet are good in preventing colon cancer, as it contains the pigment betacyaninis, which counteracts cancer. Nitrates used in meats as preservatives, cause the production of nitrosamines compounds in the body resulting in cancer. Studies reveal that beet juice inhibits the cell mutations caused by these compounds. Researchers in Hungary have also discovered that beet juice and its powdered form slows down tumor development.
Good for liver: Betaines contained in the beet juice stimulates the functions of liver.
Prevent respiratory problems: Beetroot is a source of vitamin C which helps to prevent asthma symptoms. The natural beta-carotene in beetroot also helps to prevent lungs cancer.
Boosts energy: Beetroot contains a significant amount of carbohydrates that provides fuel for energy and prolonged sports activities.
Prevent cataract: The presence of beta-carotene (vitamin A) helps to prevent age related blindness called cataract.
Capillary fragility: The flavonoids and vitamin C in beets help to support the structure of capillaries.
Macular degeneration: The beta-carotene present in beetroot avoids macular degeneration.
Stroke: Low level of potassium in body increases the risk of stroke. So potassium-rich beetroot is recommended in that aspect.
The presence of the mineral Boron in beetroot juice helps in the production of human sex hormones.
In ancient times Beetroot was used to cure fever and constipation. In the Middle Ages, beetroot was also used as a remedy for digestive disorders.
Beet leaves are also good for curing wounds.
Precaution: Beets contain oxalates, which when in excess, can cause body fluid to crystallize. So people with kidney or gallbladder problems should avoid beetroots.