Beets have been eaten for centuries in the countries around the Mediterranean. Originally people ate the tops, it was only in Roman times that the beet root became a recognised food. These days, most people equate beets with sugar – the often genetically modified sugar beet is the most common form cultivated. This is a pity because beets, in their natural form, offer a host of health benefits. Whether you eat the tops or the roots, beets are a powerhouse of health boosting nutrients. In addition to being packed with vitamins and minerals, beets contain powerful phytonutrients, antioxidant and anti-inflammatory compounds and are high in dietary fibre. Although they contain the most sugar of all vegetables, beets can safely be eaten in moderation. Try them in salads (especially the tops), juiced, or gently steamed as a delicious vegetable.
Here are 11 health benefits and nutritional facts about beets:
1. Beets Are Nutrient Rich
Beets are a fantastic source of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients. One cup of raw beet will supply you with significant amounts of vitamins A, C, E, K and the B vitamins thiamine, riboflavin, B6, B12, pantothenic acid and folate. Beets also contain choline, betaine, omega-3, flavonoids, dietary fibre and the minerals calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, zinc, copper, manganese and selenium. As you can see from this long list, eating beets a few times a week is an excellent way to give your body the nutrients it needs to promote health and fight disease.