Yes, Beets are Paleo!
Beet or beetroot is the taproot part of the beet plant. Attached to the leaves, this round or oblong root is reddish purple in color. The taste of beet is sweet because of its high sugar content and is therefore used in the production of refined sugar. Beets may vary in color. Some are white, golden yellow and even rainbow colors. Raw beets have crunchy texture. As hard as it may seem, beets are also delicate that a small puncture can cause it to bleed red or purplish pigments.
Beets have originated in prehistoric times in Northern Africa and they also grew in Asian and European coastlines.
Why You Should Eat Beets…
Anti-inflammation and Detoxification
Beets are a good source of betalains, a phytonutrient that have antioxidant, anti-inflammatory and detoxification properties. It helps protect cells and internal organs, fight inflammation and lower risk of cardiovascular diseases. Betalaine also aids in the elimination of toxins in the body. Another phytonutrient present in beets is betaine which is made from B complex vitamin and choline. This too is a key contributor in regulating the inflammation in the cardiovascular system.
Betacyanin, an antioxidant and anti-inflammatory molecules in beets, are associated in lowered risk of certain cancer types such as colon, stomach, nerve, lung, breast and prostate.
Beets are considered outstanding sources of immune-boosting vitamin C, folate, magnesium, iron, copper and phosphorus. Manganese and potassium are important minerals for blood pressure regulation and nerve and muscle function.The fiber found in beets (beets fiber) are beneficial for optimum digestive health.
Blood Pressure Regulation
The naturally occurring nitrates in beets are converted to nitric oxide which helps in maintaining normal blood pressure. Nitric oxide helps the blood vessels relax and improve the flow of blood in the body.
Carbohydrates and Sugar in Beets
Beets are among the most recommended vegetables in the Paleo Diet because of its health benefits. But because beets have high sugar content, its glycemic index level is high too. Though not totally prohibited, it is advised to limit intake especially by people who are suffering diabetes.
Beets can still be safely eaten a few times a week and it is favorable to people who are trying to gain weight because beets are an excellent source of carbohydrates.
What Experts Say About Beets
First, the pigment that gives beets their rich purple hue (betacyanin) has been found to be a powerful cancer-fighting agent, especially for tumors affecting the colon and stomach, and may also mitigate the damaging effects of nitrates (the bad compounds found in hotdogs, bologna and other overly-processed meats!) – Mark Sisson
Other Names for Beets
Beet root, table beet, red beet
All you ever wanted to know about Beets and Paleo
Mark’s Daily Apple. Smart Fuel: Beets
The Paleo Diet. Roots and Tubers in Perspective
Paleo Leap. Marinated Beets
Paleo Porn. Are Beets Paleo?
The World’s Healthiest Foods. Beets
Mercola.com. Benefits of Beets
Did we miss anything?
Comment below and let us know what you think. Do you agree with our conclusion?
photo credit: #365_beets