Learn how to cook beets (or beetroot) and you'll reap a wealth of health benefits that may surprise you.Also known as beetroot, these bulbs with leafy tops are generally available year-round in the familiar red, yellow (golden) or striped varieties, but they’re tastiest from November to March.Beets are low in calories and have zero cholesterol, giving them major points on my list of desirable traits.Fresh, raw beets can be finely grated into salads for color or used as a garnish for soup.In fact, beet salads are so trendy these days that it’s hard to find a restaurant menu without one.My preferred method is to roast beets, which concentrates their flavor and boosts their sweeter side.Beet juice is a popular drink among the healthy set, and is a colorful addition to smoothies.Pro tip: Beets pair well with many spices, including anise, caraway seeds, fennel, ginger and savory.One red flag, however: If you have kidney or gallbladder problems, or are taking an anti-coagulant medication, discuss the effects of eating beets with your doctor first.Beets’ high nitrate content turns into nitrous oxide which improves oxygen uptake and relaxes blood vessels for better circulation, enhancing the body’s tolerance to and endurance for high-intensity exercise.Beets’ high levels of folate help reduce the chance of birth defects and aid in spinal column development.Protect Your Eyes: My father had macular degeneration, so I was happy to learn that beets are an excellent source of beta-carotene, lutein and zeaxanthin.Probably the most famous dish associated with beets is Russian Borscht Soup, which I actually tasted for the first time while in Russia.I was glad I had begun my affair with beets beforehand or I might have passed it up (the dollop of sour cream on top didn’t hurt, either). .

Surprising Health Benefits of Beets

The health benefits of beets range from lower blood pressure to improved athletic performance.Plus, learn about beet nutrition and find out the healthiest way to eat beets—juiced, raw or cooked?Featured Recipe: Roasted Beet Salad.One cup delivers 4 grams of fiber, mostly the insoluble type that keeps things moving in your digestive system.Try These: Healthy Beet Recipes.Beets can improve cardiovascular health, decrease inflammation and lower blood pressure.A small 2018 study found that drinking a concentrated beetroot juice was more effective at lowering blood pressure than a non-concentrated beet juice, beetroot pancakes or beetroot crystal supplements.Both eating beets and drinking beet juice will give you anti-inflammatory betalains and other phytonutrients.Healthy ways to add beets to your diet.Gone are the days of only eating beets from a can or salad bar.Here's a quick and easy pickled beet recipe sure to add flavor and variety to dinner.Add these nutrition powerhouses to your diet for a plethora of health benefits, from improved endurance and lower blood pressure, to decreased inflammation and regularity. .

15 Ways to Eat Beet Greens (And Why You Should)

Think twice before you toss the leaves growing from your beets.So if I had my choice between a plate of braised beet greens and one of braised kale, I'd pick the beet greens every time.Plus, beet greens and stems get tender faster than kale.Beet greens are standard fare at most farmers' markets right now, and beets are increasingly available with their greens in supermarkets—well, some supermarkets.Imagine my shock and disdain when I discovered a local grocery store was systematically chopping the bushy greens from bunches of beets and no joke, stuffing them in the trash!"So what happens to those greens?".The hacked-off greens leave people wondering if you can eat beet greens at all!Take a tip from Littleton Food Co-Op in New Hampshire, where I bought a bag of beauteous beet greens on vacation, no roots attached.Cut the stem and the thick part of the center rib from each leaf.Chop the stems and leaves separately.Add the stems to the skillet along with 1/3 cup water and salt to taste and braise the chopped stems, covered, until tender for 4 to 6 minutes. .

36 Beet Recipes That Will Show You Exactly How to Eat Beets

If you’re not quite sure how to eat beets of any color, this assortment of recipes will provide you with a number of creative ways to put the vibrant root veggies to good use, especially when they're in season during the winter months.One of the most popular ways to cook beets is to chop them up, toss ’em with oil and seasoning, and roast until slightly soft and caramelized—perfect for enjoying on their own or adding to tons of different dishes, like pasta and salad. .

Can I Eat Beets Without Cooking Them?

But the root vegetable also grows in a variety of colors that can range from yellow to banded red and white.While most people know that the flesh of the beet can be eaten — dried, pickled, roasted or raw, to name a few preparations — the leaves are also edible as a salad green.Raw beets can be peeled and grated and used to make pink variations of coleslaw or incorporated into salads.Eating raw beets has been associated with a wide range of benefits, such as potentially improving the performance of athletes, particularly in environments with low oxygen levels.A 2013 study in the Journal of the American College of Sports Medicine showed that beetroot juice enhanced cycling performance in simulated altitude conditions.A 2015 study in the Journal of Sport Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism showed that beetroot juice also improved the performance of national and international-level kayakers.A 2012 study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics showed that eating a whole, baked beetroot could improve running performance. .

What Are Beets? They Deserve a Place in Your Diet

Despite their numerous health benefits and vibrant color, though, not everyone will eat beets.Even if you don't like the flavor, though, there are still ways to add beets to your diet and reap their benefits.Here's a bit more about what you should know about beets, including when they're in season, their health benefits, and some creative ways you can use them.A root vegetable grown for its edible roots and leaves, the beet is often distinguished for its "earthy" taste.But if you do love beets, you're in good company—they've been a part of human diets for thousands of years.These root vegetables range in color from the jewel-like crimson of red beets to cream-hued white beets.But you've probably eaten foods made with sugar from white beets without even realizing it.In addition to red and white beets, there are Chioggia beets, which have a red-and-white ringed flesh, and golden beets, as well as a number of lesser-known beet types.Roasting beets will make the flavor stronger and bring out some of their sweetness.But he advises pairing the root vegetable with other flavors for a more pleasing taste.Plus, beets are high in antioxidants, as well as fiber."The reason we focus on eating the rainbow of food is that color signifies a high nutrient content," Paddison explains.The root vegetable can lower blood pressure and support brain health, in addition to the digestive benefits the fiber provides.Stechly pairs beets with salad, using mixed greens, toasted walnuts, fresh goat cheese, and diced, roasted beets.Blended, cooked beets work included in a smoothie," Paddison says. .

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