Tom Robbins of Jitterbug Perfume called beets the “most intense of vegetables”. Likely he’s referring to the intensity of color in the red beet. It has a bright pink flesh that will turn your urine or stool pink! The excitement of pink poop was how I encouraged my own daughters to try beets. And, it’s definitely what brings them back for more.
The root of the beet is filled with nutrients and antioxidants that have powerful anti-inflammatory and anti-aging benefits. But curiously, the beet greens are just as healthy. So don’t toss them! Beets were first cultivated by the ancient Romans, and it was often the greens that were the preferred portion of the plant.
The incredible health benefits of Beets (and their greens!) include:
- Rich in folate, a B vitamin that supports heart health and tissue growth
- An excellent treatment for anemia (iron deficiency)
- Help to prevent kidney stones
- Enhance the digestion and absorption of food, which helps to alleviate symptoms like heartburn, indigestion, and fatigue
- Fiber-rich to support a healthy elimination (and reduce constipation)
- Aid and cleanse the liver, making them excellent for detoxification
- Beet juices and soups will clear congestion from colds and coughs
- Beet greens are an excellent source of vitamin B, C, K, calcium, and iron
Buying and Storing Beets:
Beet varieties are available in red, yellow, or with a pink and white flesh. Select fresh, firm looking beets with bright greens.
Store beets in the fridge in a plastic bag, separating the roots from the greens. Wash immediately prior to preparing.
Quick Serving Ideas:
- Beet greens can be added to salad or substituted for chard in recipes
- Boil or steam the root until tender and serve with olive oil & balsamic vinegar
- Slice it and add to fresh salads
- Prepare a beet soup or stew
- My personal favorite, juiced beet with carrot, apple, and ginger
- Roast it! Here’s a great recipe for Herb Roasted Root Vegetables, a staple in my house
Beets are great for kids, too! Try a pink smoothie or fresh pink juice with apple, carrot and beet, yummy!
Your Simple Action Plan:
Brave beets this week! Raw beets are especially beneficial, so give a juice or salad a try. And let me know what you think!
Note: Beets are a high-sugar vegetable, which is great for boosting your energy levels. If you’re on a low-glycemic or anti-candida diet they may not be your best alternative.