Monday, September 26, 2011

More on Beets!

I have had so many "hits" on my blog about fresh beets, that I decided to publish some really neat healthy facts about those lovely root vegetables.

1. Garden-beet is very low in calories (contain only 45 kcal/100 g) and fat; but is very rich in dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals.

2. The root is rich source of phytochemical compound Glycine betaine. Betaine has the property of lowering homocysteine levels in the blood. Homocysteine, one of highly toxic metabolite, promotes platelet clot as well as atherosclerotic-plaque formation which is otherwise can be harmful to blood vessels. High levels of homocystiene in the blood results in the development of coronary heart disease (CHD), stroke and peripheral vascular diseases.

3. Raw beets are an excellent source of folates; contains about 109 mcg/100 g ( Provides 27% of RDA). However, extensive cooking may significantly depletes its level in food. Folates are necessary for DNA synthesis in the cells. When given during peri-conception period folates can prevent neural tube defects in the baby.

4. It contains significant amounts of vitamin-C, one of the powerful natural antioxidant which helps body scavenge deleterious free radicals one of the reasons for cancers development.

5. Beet’s green leaves (tops) are an excellent source of carotenoids, flavonoid anti-oxidants and vitamin A; contain these compounds several times more than that of in the roots.Vitamin A is required maintaining healthy mucus membranes and skin and is also essential for vision. Consumption of natural vegetables rich in flavonoids helps to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers.

6. The beet root is also rich source of Niacin (vit B-3), Pantothenic acid (vit.B-5), Pyridoxine (vit.B-6) and carotenoids, and minerals such as iron, manganese and magnesium.

7. In addition, this root veggie indeed has very good levels of potassium. 100 g fresh root has 325 mg of potassium or 7% of daily requirements. Potassium lowers heart rate and regulates metabolism inside the cells by countering detrimental effects of sodium.

Beets are also excellent RAW...when I used to go to France beets were always included as one of the shredded vegetables when you ordered a vegetable salad (crudities). Try creating a pretty platter of raw shredded vegetables and serve with a vinagrette dressing before your healthy and so delicious.

Here's to better eating!

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