Health Benefits of Beetroot Greens
Most people know that beets are a nutritional powerhouse great for overall health.
Most however don’t know that the green part of the beet, the beetroot green, is a flavorful, nutritional powerhouse as well.
Quick facts on beetroot greens
- Beetroot greens are the green, leafy tops of beets that are highly nutritious.
- They are loaded with vitamins, minerals, fiber and nitrates making them a great staple to a healthy, preventative diet.
- You can incorporate the beet greens into many of the same dark, green leafy vegetable recipes that you use normally.
What are beetroot greens?
Beetroot greens, or beet greens, are just that: the edible green, leafy tops of beets. When you’re trimming your beets, be sure to save these nutritious greens. In fact, they make great substitutes in recipes that call for many of your other green leafy vegetables such as collard greens, kale, swiss chard and spinach. You can eat them raw or steam, sauté and braise them; the options are endless.
What are the health benefits of them?
Beetroot greens are loaded with vitamin A, C, K and even some key B vitamins like folate. They contain essential trace and major minerals including iron, calcium, potassium and magnesium. They contain a wide array of phytonutrients, plant compounds that are essential for chronic disease prevention and have many positive health effects.
Specifically, they contain carotenoids, including the antioxidant and disease-fighting plant pigments: lutein and beta-carotene. They also contain an adequate amount of fiber, as well, to support satiety and control weight.
Benefits of beetroot greens include:
- Regulates high blood pressure Beetroot greens have a good level of potassium, which is needed for regulating blood pressure. They also boost nitrates, which become nitric oxide in the body, a known component that will dilate vascular pathways and boost blood flow and protect from any blockages.
- Helps your heart out Beetroot greens are one of the top foods for your cardiovascular system. These vasodilators contain beneficial amounts of nitrates that get converted in the body to nitric oxide, which lowers inflammation and opens up blood vessels and arteries. Nitric oxide also prevents platelets from sticking together, which helps to prevent blood clots. Overall, they protect the heart.Additionally, beet greens are rich in betaine, a nutrient that is critical for converting excess homocysteine to methionine. High levels of the amino acid homocysteine can lead to plaque buildup and blocked arteries, which can cause heart disease. Essentially, beets can beat heart disease with betaine.
- Protects against chronic diseases like cancer Beetroot greens contain powerful antioxidants. In a study looking at mice fed an imbalanced diet, it was found that those that were supplemented with beetroot greens had significantly less oxidative stress and a higher level of antioxidant defense for disease protection1.
- Boosts immune system function Beetroot greens have high levels of vitamin A, a necessary nutrient for immune system health and function. Vitamin A, in the form of beta-carotene, is also a powerful antioxidant. Beetroot greens have a high antioxidant and phytonutrient status, which boosts immunity and fights off harmful invaders. Beetroot greens have even been shown to increase glutathione, the body’s natural “Master Antioxidant” nutrient1, which helps to eliminate harmful toxins and molecules within the body.
- Assists with bone health Beetroot greens contain vitamin K1, an essential vitamin for bone health. Research has alluded that vitamin K could be even more important than calcium to bone health. This is because while calcium is key to strong bones, and vitamin D is key for absorbing calcium, it’s the vitamin K that actually pulls the calcium into bones and teeth, contributing to the strength of their structures.
- Beneficial for digestion Beetroot greens contain adequate levels of both soluble and insoluble fiber, which are essential to healthy digestion. Fiber also acts as a prebiotic that helps to stimulate healthy gut microbiome, which in turn helps to benefit digestive processes. Fiber is also great for controlling blood sugar, normalizing blood lipids and decreasing inflammation.
Additionally, beetroot greens help to support healthy blood lipid levels, normalize blood pressure, naturally thin the blood and can even improve athletic performance.
Check out this post on the health benefits of beetroot in powder form.
We think of beetroot greens as a SUPER-food.
What is the importance of organic beetroot greens?
The beetgreens hold a high nutritional value and help to protect the body. They are loaded with essential vitamins and minerals, as well as plant protective compounds, like antioxidants and phytonutrients, to improve health and prevent against chronic diseases like heart disease and cancer. Be sure to source organic beetroot greens to ensure they are pesticide and chemical free. Pesticides and chemicals harm your health and should always be avoided.
Where do I buy organic beetroot greens?
You can purchase organic beetroot greens at your local Farmer’s Market or in natural food stores like Whole Foods or Natural Grocers. You can also purchase online through various companies and co-op markets. If you are purchasing either beetroot greens or powder, be sure to source an organic product that is free from chemicals, is non-GMO and free from added sugar or artificial ingredients.
What is beetroot green powder?
A beetroot green powder is a supplement that contains the beetroot greens in a quick and easy to use powdered form. If you’re purchasing a powder, be sure the beet powder is organic and contains beets AND the essential beetroot greens. When you get a powder with all of the beet components, you are getting all of the healthy nutrients of each. You can buy a high-quality, all organic beet and beet green powder, called Heart Beet, from The Drs. Wolfson.
How can I use beetroot greens when I am cooking?
Beetroot greens can be used readily in smoothies, salads, soups and even side dish vegetables. You can also use the beetgreen powder in recipes, as well. Beetroot greens have a bitter flavor profile, which makes them great for pairing with more savory dishes that contain things like olive oil, garlic, onions or other flavors.
Give it a try! Make a beetgreen salad, throw some into your favorite zucchini noodle pasta, create a beetgreen and egg frittata, add it to your morning juice/smoothie instead of spinach, try an ethnic beetgreen recipe like Moroccan beetgreens or make some baked beetgreen chips. If using the powder, throw it into shakes, juices or soups for a powerful nutrient delivery. Move over kale, there’s a new green in town!
Other fun facts on beetroot greens
- Since early, prehistoric times, beetroot greens have been eaten regularly. They originated in the Mediterranean region and could be considered a part of the healthy Mediterranean Diet.
- The entire beet (stems, leaves and bulbs) is completely edible and very healthy.
- Beetroot greens are rich in antioxidants and anti-inflammatory molecules, which can prevent several types of cancer.
Summary of information
- Beetroot greens are highly nutritious and considered a SUPERfood.
- They are great for cardiovascular health and have many nutrients that can also protect against cancer development.
- Try using beetroot greens or a powder containing the greens in your recipes for a powerful, nutrient-dense SUPERfood.
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