Q:

Are beets good for you?

A:

Quick Answer

Beets are very good for you because they contain many vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. They have anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer properties, and they help to rid your body of toxins. The vitamins and minerals in beets can help to boost your immune system.

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Full Answer

The bright red color of beets comes from phytonutrients called betalains. These phytonutrients are responsible for the anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties of beets. Beets are rich in folate, vitamin C, manganese, potassium and fiber, all of which add to their high nutrient content. Beets also contain nitrates that help to lower blood pressure, which in turn may help lower the risk of heart disease.

It is better to eat beets raw instead of cooking them. The longer beets are cooked, the more nutrients they tend to lose as the pigments are not very stable against heat. The leafy tops, known as beet greens, are as nutritious as the beet root. Although beets are high in sugar, they are low in calories, and they provide an excellent source of energy, especially when working out. To begin adding beets to your diet, try juicing fresh beets or adding a small amount of beets and beet greens to salads.

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