Roast it. Bake it. Juice it. Have it raw – 5 amazing health benefits of beetroot that will surprise you.
Did you know that beetroot is counted as one of the superfoods that are loaded with powerful nutrients? Although, it is only recently that everyone has started to recognize its actual potential, fact is that most people are averse to this humble red vegetable because of its earthy taste.
It was the Romans who first cultivated beetroot. In the 19th century, it was found to be of great commercial value after it was discovered that beetroot could be converted to sugar. Today, the vegetable is a major ingredient in uncountable recipes world over.
Here are 6 cool health benefits of beetroot that could save your life.
1. Keeps blood pressure in check. Heart attacks and strokes at bay:
Just a 250 ml daily intake of beetroot juice or consumption of 100 g of the vegetable (boiled or cooked) help you keep a tab on your blood pressure and associated ailments. How? The high content of nitrates present in beetroot processes nitric oxide in the blood, which keeps your blood vessels widened enough for healthy blood flow.
2. Loaded with antioxidants:
Have you ever wondered where beetroot gets its color from? Betacyanin is not only a pigment, but is also an antioxidant. Antioxidants protect artery walls by reducing the oxidation of LDL (bad) cholesterol. Apart from this, beetroot also contains soluble fiber, carotenoids and flavonoids, which help prevent bad cholesterol from being deposited in the arteries.
3. Enhances tissue growth:
The folic acid in beetroot helps ensure normal tissue growth. Especially during the first trimester of pregnancy, it can help prevent spinal birth defects like spina bifida. The iron in the vegetable can also counter fatigue, as well as anemia, in pregnant mothers and can be most beneficial if had uncooked.
4. Maintains bone and brain health: Beetroot also contains silica, a mineral that helps your body absorb calcium, which is crucial for your musculo-skeletal health and also reduces the risk of osteoporosis.
It has been reported through various studies that the nitrates in beetroot may also be beneficial in fighting the progression of dementia, owing to an increase in the blood flow to the brain. The presence of folic acid too may help protect against Alzhiemer’s and dementia.
5. Controls blood sugar: Since beetroot is devoid of fat and barely has any calories, it can convert into sugars very slowly in the body, helping stabilize blood sugar levels.
Photo Credits: Zsuzsanna Kilian