When it comes to health foods, beetroot is often overlooked. This humble root vegetable is usually relegated to the pickle jar or tossed in a salad, but what many people don’t realize is that beetroot is packed with nutrients and offers a host of health benefits. From reducing blood pressure to boosting exercise performance, here are just a few reasons why you should start incorporating beetroot into your diet.
Reduce Blood Pressure
One of the most well-known health benefits of beetroot is its ability to reduce blood pressure. This is thanks to the high concentration of nitrates found in beetroot. When consumed, nitrates are converted into nitric oxide, which helps to widen blood vessels and improve blood flow. A 2012 study found that eating nitrate-rich foods like beetroot can help to lower blood pressure by up to 10 mmHg.
Boost Exercise Performance
If you’re an athlete or just enjoy working out, you’ll be happy to know that beetroot can also help boost your exercise performance. A 2010 study found that drinking 500 ml of beetroot juice was able to improve running performance by up to 16 percent. The study’s participants also had lower levels of perceived exertion, meaning they were able to exercise for longer periods of time without feeling as tired.
As you can see, there are plenty of good reasons to start eating more beetroot. So next time you’re at the grocery store, pick up a bunch of this nutrient-packed vegetable and enjoy all the amazing health benefits it has to offer. Your body will thank you!