The Red Riding Root
Not only is it known for its healthy and natural dye for food, beetroot is also a host for vitamins and minerals, as well as antioxidant. And the good thing about it, it doesn’t matter how we want to take our beetroot, roasted, juiced, chopped inside a salad, sour-pickled, or swimming in soup, it will still give you all benefits.
Beetroot first found its stardom way back when Romans still rule-walking the world. It was recognized for its ability to be processed into sugar. It has a bold earthy flavor and has gained fans especially Europe when they invented a hearty meal called borscht, a soup made out of beetroot.
Not many people know, but beetroot is actually in the same group as chard and spinach, veggies which leaves and roots are equally edible. The color varies from deep purple, red, to white and golden with a sweet characteristic that made beetroot a munch-able healthy snack.
A Colored Health
There are green-colored parts in beetroot, and that’s where all nutrients are hidden. As a vitamin and mineral host we mentioned earlier, beetroot is naturally rich in vitamins A, B6, C, iron, calcium, soluble fiber, manganese, folic acid, glutamine or amino acid, and potassium. Not to mention its traces of carbohydrates and protein. What makes it fine is that you can switch your daily intake of fruit and vegetable by including three beetroots in your meal or simply 250 ml of beetroot juice.
If initially we associated everything that reads healthy as greens and more greens, maybe red somewhere in the middle, beetroot and its charming thick colors is the new healthy color. Besides those general vitamins and minerals mentioned before, there are some secret content that are on-point in tackling certain diseases.
The first one would be nitrates that give birth to nitric oxide gas inside the blood. This particular gas then works to enlarge blood vessels and lower the level too. Because now the track of which blood runs is widened, it helps carrying blood to the brain and help us fight dementia.
Moving on to the antioxidant gem in beetroot. Beetroot colors comes from a plant pigment called betacyanin, which happens to be an antioxidant too. We do know how antioxidant would change our health, with its ability to control oxidation and show LDL cholesterol, the bad guy, the exit. This colorful betacyanin also will give the protection from cardiovascular disease and stroke. Now that blood department is taken care of, don’t forget how some of us dodge cancer. Yes, the pigment maker in beetroot is indeed an anticancer maker as well.
This is another antioxidant part in beetroot that we need to give credit. This enzyme will increase the white blood cells count that will form body’s natural defenses against foreign cells.
Without silica mineral, calcium will go to waste. That’s the simple way to put on how important for our body to have silica mineral, and how beetroot is the primary source of one. Calcium will work better to preserve the skeleton health and hinder us from osteoporosis with silica mineral.
Carotenoids and flavonoids
They are definitely not newbie in the land of healthy nutrition. With the same function as betcyanin, imagine how a triple threat combines three of them will clean our arteries from bad cholesterol.
The low Glycemic Load
Let’s talk science for a bit. As far as some of us know, glycemic has something to do with blood sugar level. In beetroot language, the Glycemic Load or GL is only at 2.9. It is considered good because it slow down the sugar conversion, thus giving us the healthy level of blood sugar. Plus, beetroot has no amount of fat and low in calories.
Hurry and get some of the freshest beetroots in the nearest health store in town. Picking the right quality will be another area of expertise. The beetroot comes home with you only if it still has the green part with no wilting sign, has a firm texture with zesty red or purple color. We then will be in charge of keeping beetroot fresh in the refrigerator and will be perfect for the next three to four days.
Before cooking it, wash beetroots under running water without tearing the skin to keep the pigment intact. Steam the green leaves so it won’t lose the nutrition. Don’t peel the root and let it be boiled altogether so the juice won’t be spoiled.
For those who have a history of kidney stones are not recommended to consume beetroots. In the considerable amount, though, it would be okay. Your urine may turn colors, but it will be nothing to worry about.
Curious how you can incorporate this little gem in your daily menu. Here you can find a refreshing hearty Beetroot Juice and what do you think about a honey glazed Beetroot Salad paired with goodies like kale, quinoa and some crumbled goat cheese.