Beets are one of those root vegetables that go under the radar and often get forgotten about. Perhaps it’s because the carrot or the potato tend to take center stage in the root-veggie section, or maybe it’s because beeturia really freaks some people out..and understandably so… Lol. (For the record, beeturia = peeing red due to the beet’s rich pigmentation). And yes… it’s weird, but totally normal!
Anyway, regardless of this or that reason, I really think that most people just don’t know much about the benefits of beet root, nor how significant they can be in terms of energy, endurance and recovery!
My aim today is simply to inspire you to fill your grocery cart with more beets than you would normally—even if that means just 10% more.
So before I go on, I have to confess that my fascination with beets actually began quite recently, sometime this year. Before then, I would sorta skip past the beets because in my mind they were way too high in sugar which might disrupt blood-sugar balance, since they doooo rank pretty high on the glycemic index.
But it wasn’t until I attended a recent Nutrition conference that I started to see beets in a different light. I discovered that athletes, or anyone with a fitness routine, should actually be including more beets (or rich nitric oxide foods) in their diet to help maximize stamina and performance!
After reading the results of several clinical trials, I started to nerd-out over beets and thought I should share my findings on the blog.
I think this information is especially good to know if you’re looking to power up your circuit training, pilates, or yoga workouts!
Check out these Note-worthy, Beetastic Benefits:
- Studies found that beets help improve exercise performance, especially with strength & resistance types of training.
- They assist in cardiovascular health due to their high nitric oxide content which oxygenates the blood.
- The rich nitric oxide content found in beets energize a work-out significantly more than placebo results.
- The high nitric oxide levels found in beet play a role in lowering high blood pressure (and can actually assist in stabilizing bp).
Several 2016 Studies have established that supplementation of nitrate increases nitric oxide which in turn improves exercise performance. A current study aimed to investigate the effects of nitrate ingestion on performance of bench press resistance exercise until failure. Twelve recreationally active (age, 21 ± 2 years) resistance-trained men participated in the study. The study used a double-blind, randomized cross-over design, where participants ingested either 70 ml of “BEET It Sport” nitrate shot containing 400 mg of nitrate or a blackcurrant placebo drink. The results showed a significant difference in repetitions to failure (p ≤ 0.001) and total weight lifted (p ≤ 0.001). Ultimately, this study found that nitrate supplementation has the potential to improve resistance training performance and work output compared with a placebo.
Here’s what to Watch-Out for:
- If you are a person who needs to watch out for high-sugar intake, then I’d recommend going with a beet supplement to experience the nitric oxide benefits, without the added sugar.
- If you can tolerate a reasonable amount of sugar, then I’d recommend a diet rich with arugula and beets. You can look into raw beet powder, pickled beets, juices, & lacto-fermented beets. Personally, I also like making an apple, beet, & cabbage cole slaw recipe, which you can find on my instaphotos soon!
- Beets are also known for their concentrated source of oxalates, which might be problematic for people diagnosed with health problems that require the lessening or removal of oxalates. If unsure, check with a health professional right away!
Check out Berkeley Life’s Nitric oxide supplement on amazon or on the Berkeley Life website (www.berkeleylife.com) for more information and clinical research on nitric oxide supplements. I highly recommend Berkeley life (if you’re going with a supplement) because they are well-researched, credible and established as a health brand.
P.S. I loooooove how their supplement includes saliva test strips for gauging nitric oxide levels. It really puts things into perspective when you have a visual reference to go off of!
P.P.S You can find a beet juice recipe on my blog by clicking here. For a Low-sugar version of this juice recipe, limit carrots and beet to 1/2 of what’s listed.
If you’ve enjoyed this information about BEETS, remember to LIKE & SHARE this post with someone who might enjoy it as well!!!
ModernHolisticLife Disclosure Statement:
This article is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to treat, diagnose, cure, or prevent disease. This article has not been reviewed by the FDA. Always consult with your primary care physician or naturopathic doctor before making any significant changes to your health and wellness routine.
The Effects of Nitrate-Rich Supplementation on Neuromuscular Efficiency during Heavy Resistance Exercise. Shawn D. Flanagan, David P. Looney, Mark J. S. Miller, William H. DuPont, Luke Pryor, Brent C. Creighton, Adam J. Sterczala, Tunde K. Szivak, David R. Hooper, Carl M. Maresh, et al. J Am Coll Nutr. 2016; 35(2): 100–107. Published online 2016 Feb 17. doi: 10.1080/07315724.2015.1081572