The Top Red Beet Powder Benefits
Red beet powder benefits the human body more than you’ve probably taken the time to imagine. In fact, it’s a highly underrated plant when it comes to health.
On the other hand, red beet or beetroot is practically acclaimed in Eastern European cuisine. It‘s the main ingredient in Borscht, a soup popular in many countries including the Ukraine, Russia, Poland, Belarus, Lithuania and Romania, to name a few.
Pickled, boiled, added to soups or used to make fermented drinks such as Kvass, beets have enjoyed a wide range of culinary uses.
And traditionally, a number of medicinal applications also existed, such as blood building, fever reducing, colon cleansing and, my favorite, as an aphrodisiac.
Beets were first mentioned in ancient Assyrian texts around 800 BC in the Hanging Gardens of Babylon, and went on to be widely consumed across Europe by the nineteenth century. That’s right, way back in 800 BC, someone was writing about beets. Go figure.
The round, red beet we know and love is actually the tap-root of the Beta vulgaris plant, hidden below a tuft of edible green leaves.
Fun fact: Former US President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have a strong dislike of beets, and asked for them not to be planted in the White House’s organic vegetable garden. I’m guessing they didn’t realise the beet powder benefits they were missing out on!
Beet Powder Benefits Break Down
Beet contains high levels of nitrate. Nitrite is converted by the body into nitric oxide (NO), a molecule that relaxes and widens blood vessels, and may influence the efficiency of muscle tissue.
These nitrates play a huge part in the humble beet’s potential benefits for cardiovascular health and improved physical performance, which is currently the most well-researched benefit of beet consumption.
Beet powder benefits us via other significant compounds:
→ Betalains (a type of water-soluble pigment with antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects)
→ Folate (B9)
→ Boron (linked to sex hormone production)
Beet may offer the following:
✔ Improved performance during physical exercise
Consumption of beet is associated with increased NO, which helps open up blood vessels (vasodilation), lower blood pressure and facilitate increased oxygenation of muscle tissue. Studies have found that dietary nitrate consumption improves physical performance.
✔ Anti-fatigue effects
Beet has been shown to reduce the oxygen ‘cost’ of running and walking, resulting in greater endurance and less fatigue.
✔ Reduction in blood pressure
Increased nitrate consumption (and conversion to NO) promotes blood vessel relaxation and decreased blood pressure.
These beet powder benefits may assist with the following conditions:
Beet may enhance circulation to and oxygenation of the brain, via increased NO and antioxidants.
With strong antioxidant effects and cardiovascular support, beet addresses the negative implications of diabetes.
→ Cardiovascular health
By decreasing blood pressure and offering antioxidant support, beet fosters good cardiovascular health.
Betalain may induce and support phase 2 liver detoxification pathways.
→ Cancer prevention
Anti-inflammatory and antioxidant pigments such as betalain may offer cancer preventive effects. So far, beet has been associated with positive outcomes for breast and colon, prostate, lung and skin cancers. Future large-scale studies are expected to support this.
How To Maximise Your Beet Powder Benefits
You may have experienced what I like to call a visual overdose of red beets. As in, you could get a bit of a surprise when it
comes out the other end. Red isn’t necessarily the colour you want to see in your stool…
Additionally, eating beets can cause red urine (beeturia - seriously), which occurs in 10 - 15% of people.
But don’t be deterred. Adding a bit of color to your diet in the form of whole foods generally equates to an increased intake of antioxidants. This is definitely the case with beets.
I’ve heard some people say they don’t eat beets for fear of staining their teeth. While I’m yet to see that actually happen, red beet powder can be a great alternative. And it’s a lot less messy to prepare!
There is some evidence that excess beet consumption can result in an accumulation of minerals such as copper, iron, magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and zinc. But for most people, beets aren’t a major part of their diet, and this isn’t an issue.
One thing to bear in mind is that beet consumption may cause a sudden decrease in blood pressure, resulting in hypotension. If this is an issue for you, as always, it’s best to chat to your doctor before increasing your beet intake.
To get your beet powder benefits, there is no definitive dose, though 1 - 3 teaspoons daily is often prescribed.
As for supplements that complement your red beet juice powder, it works well with CoQ10 for athletic performance, energy production and reducing blood pressure. There is evidence to suggest it may also work well with milk thistle, globe artichoke and dandelion root for improving liver health.
No need to ask, I’ll just tell you - we’ve included CoQ10, milk thistle, globe artichoke and dandelion in the Athletic Greens formula. So you’re basically covered with a single daily scoop.
Beet Powder Benefits Physical Performance In More Ways Than One
As I mentioned, beet powder benefits physical performance, but to optimize this, it should be taken for at least three days prior to the event.
Lately it has become particularly popular with athletes for this very reason.
As a natural performance enhancer, athletes can get all the beet powder benefits without worrying about the banned substances list. In fact, beets are being embraced at the highest levels, right up to national sporting institutes.
Not to harp on about the physical performance enhancement, but you might be interested to know the effects can be very acute.
Taking a high dose of red beet juice 20 to 30 minutes before a workout can produce a noticeable performance improvement. This is due to better blood flow which helps flush out lactic acid faster during rest periods and creates a bigger perceived “pump” for those doing weight training.
And one last note on that… Studies show that the more highly trained you are, the greater the effect.
As you probably gathered through reading the info above, beet has been most thoroughly studied for its potential to enhance athletic performance and cardiovascular health.
Beet powder benefits include an array of additional features such as liver support and cancer prevention that await further research.
And while I must say I’m quite fond of the vibrant color of this beautiful root, I’m ecstatic to be able to get all its benefits without the fear of staining myself, my clothes and my kitchen!