Beets benefit your body in a number of ways. They are very nutritious, yet low in calories. Beets’ rich purple color comes from betacyanin, a powerful cancer fighting agent. It has been found to be especially effective against colon cancer in several studies.
Beets are rich in folate, which helps prevent anemia and neural tube birth defects, such as spina bifida. In studies done on animals it was found that the antioxidant activity from beets could help prevent heart disease by lowering total cholesterol and triglycerides and raising HDL (good) cholesterol. Beets also help reduce chronic inflammation, which has been linked to conditions such as Alzheimer’s, heart disease, osteoporosis and diabetes.
Beets have a somewhat sweet taste which comes from their high sugar content. In fact, beets are used in the production of refined sugar. Raw beets are crunchy and can be somewhat tough, but when cooked their texture becomes soft and buttery. Look for beets that come in a bunch rather than loose beets. Bunch beets are fresher and will cook faster. Their leaves can also be cooked and eaten and have a flavor similar to chard.
I am a Duke Integrative Medicine trained Health Coach located in Charlotte, NC. I hold a B.S. and M.A. in Wellness Management. I have a passion for health and for helping others achieve the healthy life they desire.