With its vermilion color, cooked beetroot adorns and gives us life by helping the heart. It is unparalleled decorating any dish and it can be prepared in a short time. Also raw and chopped or in juice, very well blended, it will nourish us immediately.
It is difficult for me not to think of poetry when talking about routes and vegetables. Since ancient times, it has been conceived that medicine is an art , and I believe that the infinite color palette that the plant kingdom gives me is ideal for painting the canvas of human health . Today's color is purplish blood red.
Beta vulgaris rubra , beet, beet or betarraga. There are several types of this robust root. The best known in Chile is the intense red-purple. It can be consumed in juices, raw or cooked, and after eating it, its effects are sometimes frightening, since it stains urine and feces blood red . Will it have effects on human blood?
Research into this root has generated a stir in recent years as science has found it to possess different beneficial micronutrients. These include phytochemicals including ascorbic acid (vitamin C), carotenoids, flavonoids, and phenolic acids . It also has betalanines , which despite being responsible for painting our liquids and body waste red, have interesting levels of antioxidants and anti-inflammatories. All these elements would be important therapeutic focuses to counteract oxidative stress and permanent inflammation that exists in diseases such as fatty liver, diabetes, cancer and rheumatoid arthritis.
Blood travels throughout our body several times a day and it does so through tubes called arteries and veins. The set of them is called blood vessels and they are responsible for transporting oxygen and nutrients to all organs. The walls of these vessels are lined with a layer of cells called the vascular endothelium . This "mini organ" produces an impressive amount of chemical elements that keep us healthy. When for different reasons it gets sick, what is called endothelial dysfunction occurs , which results in diseases such as high blood pressure and plaques that lead to heart attacks.
Among the things that the endothelium produces, we have the famous Nitric Oxide (NO) , responsible for vasodilating (expanding) the walls of the arteries. This is critical to maintaining normal blood pressure . However, in endothelial dysfunction, this element decreases, generating "stress" within our pipes that leads to high blood pressure.
Guess what the beet possesses; Nitric oxide! Well, at least in its potential form. This vegetable is rich in nitrates , which when entering our body go through a series of chemical reactions that transform it into nitrites and from there to nitric oxide. What effects have been discovered? In 2014, the daily blood pressure of 21 overweight elderly people who drank natural beet juice for 3 weeks was followed. It was concluded that there was a significant decrease in blood pressure, but this increased again once they stopped drinking the juice.
Recently, in 2015, one of the most complex studies on the subject was published: 68 hypertensive patients with and without treatment drank beetroot juice for 4 weeks. The results are still surprising: permanent significant decrease in blood pressure, relaxation of the arteries, improvement of up to 20% in endothelial function and no adverse effects . The scientists concluded that adjunctive blood pressure treatment with beets is a viable option. Why does this matter? Because hypertension is the greatest risk factor for mortality worldwide.
Can you imagine what other benefits improving the function of the arteries with beets has? Vasodilation helps to better oxygenate our muscles. A fun study put people through moderate and high intensity exercise. One group included beets as part of their daily intake and another group did not. Those who ingested it increased their physical performance, lowered their blood pressure, used less oxygen and took longer to feel exhausted . No other type of fitness supplement found in the industry today has done this. Your physical activity or training would improve if you add this root to your meals.
The improvement of blood flow to different parts of our body does not stop there. Greater arrival of oxygen and nutrients to our brain favors our learning, concentration and memory functions . Beetroot would be a fundamental contribution for people with Alzheimer's, Parkinson's, depression and diabetes.
And the final data. Do you want to improve your sexual energy? An erection occurs when the correct amount of blood reaches the genitals. For ideal blood pumping, nitric oxide is essential. Drinking a beet juice could lead you to have an unforgettable night of those. Thank you beets please granted.
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