What Are Beets?
Beets or beetroots, as they are often called, belong to the Chenopodiaceous family. Their history stretches back to ancient times, and the earliest signs of their cultivation were approximately 4,000 years ago in the Mediterranean region. From there, they were probably transported to Babylon, and by the 9th century AD, they had made their way into the Chinese culture and cuisine. They have long been associated with sexuality and have been used as an aphrodisiac for thousands of years.
Beetroots are frequently added as an ingredient to salads, soups, and picklesand are also used as a natural coloring agent. Even though beets are available throughout the year, they are still considered seasonal vegetables. Besides their use as an actual food item, beets are valuable as a source of sucrose, which makes them a viable replacement for tropical sugar cane. They are frequently used to make refined sugar.
Nutritional Value Of Beets
Beets have a wide range of health benefits because of their nutritional content, including vitamins, minerals, and organic compounds like carotenoids, lutein/zeaxanthin, glycine, betaine, dietary fiber, vitamin C, magnesium, iron, copper, and phosphorus, while also being a source of beneficial flavonoids called anthocyanins. They are very low in calories, with no cholesterol, but they do have the highest sugar content of all vegetables.
Health Benefits Of Beets
The roots and leaves of beets have plenty of medicinal uses which include the following:
Improve Heart Health
Beet fiber helps to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides by increasing the level of HDL (good) cholesterol. Having a high level of triglycerides increases the risk for heart-related problems, so an increased HDL is a good line of defense against that. The presence of the nutrient betaine lowers the levels of homocysteine in the body which can also be harmful to the blood vessels. Thus, consumption of beetroot helps to prevent cardiovascular diseases in multiple ways, so conditions like atherosclerosis, heart attacks, and stroke are less likely to develop. The fiber in beets also works to strip excess LDL cholesterol from the walls and helps to eliminate it from the body quickly.
Reduce Birth Defects
Beets are good for pregnant women since they are a source of B vitamin folate which helps in the development of infant’s spinal column. Deficiency of folate can lead to a variety of conditions called neural tube defects.
Prevent Certain Cancers
Studies have revealed that beets are good at preventing skin, lung, and colon cancer since they contain the pigment betacyanins, which counteracts cancerous cell growth. Nitrates used in meats as preservatives can stimulate the production of nitrosamine compounds in the body which can also result in cancer. Studies have now shown 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. Adding a healthy amount of beets to your diet can keep your body cancer-free for a very long time.
Improve Liver Health
Betaines in beet juice stimulate the functions of the liver and keep it healthy.
Prevent Respiratory Problems
Beetroot is a source of vitamin C that helps to prevent asthma symptoms. The natural beta-carotene in beetroot also helps to prevent lung cancer. Vitamin C is a powerful antioxidant that boosts the immune system in a number of ways. Besides acting as an antioxidant itself and defending against the effects of free radicals in the body, it also stimulates the activity of white blood cells, which are the body’s main line of defense against foreign bodies, as well as viral, bacterial, fungal, and protozoan toxins that can result in a multitude of infections and illnesses.
The presence of beta-carotene, which is a form of vitamin A, helps to prevent age-related blindness called cataracts as well as a reduction in macular degeneration that commonly occurs as we get older. Vitamin A is considered a powerful antioxidant substance that is involved in many essential activities of the body.
The flavonoids and vitamin C in beets help to support the structure of capillaries.
Act as Aphrodisiac
Beets have been considered an aphrodisiac or sexual booster for millennia. Part of this stems from the fact that beets contain significant levels of the mineral boron, which has been shown to boost the production of sexual hormones. This can lead to a boost in your libido, increased fertility, sperm mobility improvement, and a reduction in frigidity in the bedroom. Your sexual life can get a legitimate and time-tested push in the right direction by adding beets to your diet.