5 Health Benefits of Beetroot you Need to Know About
Incredibly nutritious, delicious and versatile, beetroot is used in a number of dishes around the globe. From salad and beetroot crisps to vitamin-packed beetroot juice or even houmous – there are a variety of delicious ways to incorporate this root vegetable into your diet. Aside from being incredibly tasty, beetroot boasts an array of health benefits, some of which may surprise you!
1) Beetroot Could Lower Blood Pressure
If left untreated, high blood pressure can lead to an increased risk of heart attacks, strokes and heart disease.
However, studies have suggested that beetroot could actually help to lower blood pressure within just a few hours. The effects appear to be stronger when the beetroot is consumed in its raw form, rather than cooked – which is thought to be because of the nitrate content in raw beetroot.
This is because nitrates are converted into nitric oxide in the body, which helps to dilate blood vessels and reduce blood pressure. However, it is important to note that this is a temporary effect, which lasts for just a few hours after, so it’s important to regularly consume beetroot, such as a daily beetroot shot, in order to reap the benefits.
2) Beetroot May Help you to Perform Better During Exercise
If you’re a sports lover, you’re sure to be on the constant lookout for ways to improve your physical performance – but did you know that beetroot could be the exact thing you’re looking for?
Thought to improve time to exhaustion, velocity and endurance – it’s no wonder beetroot is often a staple in an athlete’s diet. In fact, gold medal-winning Paralympic athlete, David Weir swears by beetroot juice!
But why is beetroot thought to improve athletic performance? It’s all down to the dietary nitrate content.
As we’ve already mentioned, beetroot is packed full of dietary nitrates, which are converted into nitric oxide in the body, dilating the blood vessels. Aside from lowering blood pressure, this can also increase oxygen capacity, as well as improving the blood flow to the muscle tissues, providing them with more oxygen to improve function during exercise. This is especially prevalent in endurance activities, such as running, cycling and swimming.
If you’re wondering when to take beetroot before exercise, aim to consume a form of it around 2-3 hours before training, as this is thought to maximise the benefits. A Raw Turmeric and Beetroot shot is a handy way to ensure you’ve always got a source of beetroot on hand before you train. As it’s in liquid form it is thought to be more bioavailable – meaning you’re more likely to reap the benefits! Drink up!
3) Beetroot is Super Nutritious
Whether you’re a health-conscious foodie, or you’re simply trying to improve your health and wellbeing – beetroot should certainly be an addition to your diet!
Beetroot is full of a number of different vitamins and minerals, including:
- Folate (vitamin B9)
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A
So, whether you add it to a healthy salad, enjoy it in a warming soup, or even get adventurous with a vegetarian beetroot burger – there are so many ways to incorporate this nutritious root into your diet!
4) Beetroot is Said to Help Fight Inflammation
Chronic inflammation can spell disaster for your health and could lead to the development of a number of diseases, including certain cancers, obesity and heart disease.
However, beetroot may be able to help fight inflammation within the body. This is because they contain compounds called betalains (which is what gives them their distinctive deep purple colour). These compounds possess powerful antioxidant properties, which is thought to reduce inflammation within the body.
This could also be useful for athletes, helping to reduce muscle inflammation after exercise to improve recovery times.
5) They Might Even Give your Brain a Boost
Another impressive health benefit of beetroot is that it’s thought to support brain health. Unfortunately, the brain function naturally declines with age, which is thought to be caused by a reduction in blood flow.
However, studies have shown that the nitrates in beetroot may actually help to improve brain function by promoting oxygen flow to the brain – particularly the frontal lobe, which is associated with decision making and memory.
So, whether you incorporate a handy Raw Turmeric and Beetroot shot into your daily routine, or you experiment with beetroot in your kitchen – these health benefits of beetroot are hard to ignore!