This green salad will not disappoint. It is not your typical spinach only salad. You’ll have a small handful of spinach, arugula, and beet top greens in this salad bowl! Beets are a root vegetable and can come in a variety of colors: red, yellow, orange, and white. Beet tops are highly underrated. When you think of beets you almost never use its stem and leafy parts.
Incorporating the beet tops will give you more minerals, vitamins, flavonoids, and antioxidants than its root parts ironically! The tops are super rich in vitamin A, vitamin K, vitamin C, B-complex vitamins, and many minerals such as: magnesium, copper, calcium, sodium, potassium, iron, manganese, and phosphorus. Don’t forget you have the actual beet root itself too! The root is a also a nutrient storehouse of B-complex vitamins including B-3 (niacin), B-5 (pantothenic acid), and B-6 (pyridoxine). It too contains iron, manganese, copper, magnesium, and potassium.
One awesome fact about beets is that they contain a lot of betaine. Betaine has some pretty powerful benefits:
- It is amazing for your liver health. It can prevent and reduce accumulation of fat in your liver. Studies showed that dietary betaine improves liver function!
- It has a long list of heart health benefits. It has been shown to improve symptoms related to chronic illness and heart disease without toxicity. Betaine and glycocyamine (a direct precursor to creatine) taken together led to an improved sense of well-being, less fatigue, greater strength and endurance, and increased desire for (and performance of) physical and mental work. The subjects with arteriosclerosis or rheumatic disease and congestive heart failure had improved cardiac function.
- It may help increase glucose tolerance for both diabetics and non diabetics.
Betaine is an important human nutrient obtained from the diet from a variety of foods. It is rapidly absorbed and utilized to maintain liver, heart, and kidney health. Betaine can reduce the elevated serum homocysteine concentrations associated with mild or severe hyperhomocystinuria and may play a role in epigenetics and athletic performance.
Beets nutrition facts and health benefits. (n.d.). Retrieved July 14, 2016, from http://www.nutrition-and-you.com/beets.html
Borsook ME, Borsook H. Treatment of cardiac decompensation with betaine and glycocyamine. Ann West Med Surg 1951;5:830–55.
Craig, S. A. (2004, September). The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Retrieved July 14, 2016, from http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/80/3/539.full
Graybiel A, Patterson CA. Use of betaine and glycocyamine in the treatment of patients with heart disease: preliminary report. Ann West Med Surg 1951;5:863–75.
Van Zandt V, Borsook H. New biochemical approach to the treatment of congestive heart failure. Ann West Med Surg 1951;5:856–62.