Beets or beetroot are popular root vegetables used as an ingredient in different cuisines around the world. They are eaten as vegetables or consumed as juice. Aside from being one of the things people may find in a salad bar, beets are also used for medicinal purposes. The vitamins and minerals contained in beets have made them among the options used for the treatment of some diseases. The consumption of beets also offers some beneficial effects on the body. In this article, we will be looking at the nutrition fact about beets!
Nutrients in One Cup of Beets
Beets are good sources of fiber and carbohydrates. This root vegetable also contains vitamin C, folate or vitamin B9, potassium, manganese, and iron. Aside from containing a good amount of vitamins and minerals, beets are low in fat and calories. They also have inorganic nitrates and pigments, which have several health benefits.
To be specific, here are the nutrients in one cup of beet:
- Protein – 2 grams
- Carbs – 10 grams
- Sugar – 7 grams
- Fiber – 3 grams
There are other nutrients in beets also! We will be looking at those and the health benefits in the next section!
Nutrition Fact about Beets
The following are some of the health benefits offered by beets.
1. Enhance Athletic Performance
Beetroot juice is known to enhance athletic performance due to the nitrates they contain. The nitrates improve mitochondria efficiency. Mitochondria are responsible for the production of energy in the cells of the body. A useful nutrition fact to know about beets is that the high volume of inorganic nitrate in beets also enhance athletic performance and oxygen use. The vegetable also increases stamina and cycling performance. This results in better athletic performance.
2. Regulates Blood Pressure
The body converts nitrates in beets into nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is a compound that makes blood vessels relax and dilate. Due to this, the blood vessels makes oxygen and nutrient-rich blood to easily flow throughout the body. The improvement of blood circulation will result to lower blood pressure. Studies have shown blood pressure going down after consuming red beet juice after three hours. The studies showed a drop in systolic blood pressure of up to 10 points among male test subjects who consumed beet juice.
3. Lowers Heart Disease Risk
Aside from lowering blood pressure, beets can also contribute to the reduction of the risk of heart ailments. The nutritional facts about beets is that the folate and betaine in beets can also help in the reduction of the levels of homocysteine. A high level of this amino acid can increase the risk of contracting heart disease. A lower homocysteine level means a lower risk of heart disease.
4. Reduces Inflammation
Beets contain a pigment called betalains. This pigment gives the vegetable its bright red color and may have some antioxidant properties. It can also help prevent inflammation in the body. Chronic inflammation is normally associated with several diseases, including liver disease, cancer, and obesity. Beetroot juice can help reduce this inflammation and may also help fight other diseases.
5. Fights Cancer
The same pigment that gives beets their bright red color and anti-inflammatory properties may help defend against some types of cancer. The antioxidants in the vegetable may also help in the prevention of cancer. A study showed beetroot extract causing the growth of breast and prostate cancer cells to slow down. The root vegetable also contains a huge amount of a unique fiber that is associated with a reduction in the risk of colon cancer.
6. Promotes Liver Health
A beets nutrition fact is that beets contain antioxidants, iron, betaine, calcium, and B vitamins that can help enhance liver health. The vegetable improves liver health by thinning and allowing bile to freely flow from the liver to the small intestine. Studies have also shown that beets can help in fighting liver disease, according to the American Liver Foundation. This is mainly due to the antioxidants present in beets.
7. Enhance Digestion
The fiber content of beets allows it to improve digestion. A cup of beetroot normally contains around four grams of fiber. Due to this, the vegetable is a good source of fiber. Dietary fiber helps in the reduction of the risk of constipation and hemorrhoids. The betaine content of beets also contributes to better digestion. Aside from better digestion, the fiber content of beets also helps in the prevention of some chronic diseases, such as type 2 diabetes, colon cancer, and heart disease.
8. Promotes Brain Health
When the blood vessels relax and dilate due to nitric oxide, the flow of blood into the brain increases. This means brain function will improve. This is important since studies have shown the body’s capacity to produce nitric oxide decreases with age. Due to this, the neuron activity and energy metabolism of the brain will also go down. Beets contain nitrates that can help enhance cognitive and mental functions by promoting the relaxation and dilation of blood vessels. This will improve blood flow into the brain’s frontal lobe, which is linked to high-level thinking. This means the consumption of beets can help promote brain health.
While further studies have yet to be conducted on beets, it is still important to take into account the beneficial effects this root vegetable can provide. I hope that this article on the beets nutrition fact was helpful. If you are interested, visit the health facts page!