Thought to be native to the Mediterranean region, beets are believed to have been cultivated by the Greeks since around 300 BC. A well-known staple in Russia and other Slavic states, borscht (beet soup), came on the scene between the 5th and 9th centuries in Ukraine and was considered “peasant food.”
Today, there are those of us who enjoy beets simply for their wonderful “earthy” taste. We like them pickled, as a side dish, roasted, and in soups.
But did you know beets are used by athletes worldwide as a power booster? The lowly beet? That’s right, scientific studies reveal that it’s because beets are rich in dietary nitrates which positively affects mitochondrial function on the cellular level reducing the oxygen cost during exercise. In other words, beets help you exercise with more energy for longer periods of time.
Besides this, beets are also a rich source of color-rich pigments call betalains which function both as antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties. By the way, it’s these same pigments that cause a condition in about 10-14% of the population called Beeturia. That’s when you notice your urine and even your poop taking on a red color so don’t be freaked out it this happens to you.
So do you want to enjoy a pleasant, natural energy-boosting food? Give beets a try. You can order your locally-grown, fresh beets online at Toppled Barn Farm.