Are you ready for Autumn? Today’s equinox lets us know that Autumn is coming. It’s not fully here yet, and there are still a few summer veggies at the allotment, but it is time to think about building up your health to avoid the coughs and colds that do the rounds once the weather changes. The key is to build up your resistance now, to stay healthy and prevent being susceptible to those bugs and the way to do it is through your diet. If I had to pick just one food to recommend you introduce or increase, it is beetroot. Why? What makes it so special? Well, one cup of raw beetroot contains 58 calories, made up of carbohydrates and sugar, 2 grams of protein. It has Vitamin A, Vitamin C, many of the B vitamins, Folate, Calcium, magnesium, potassium, zinc, copper, selenium and Iron.
It also contains nitrate which converts to nitric oxide and this is essential to the health of your cells. Healthy cells = healthy you. It has been shown to be involved in most cellular activities. It Helps memory and behavior by transmitting information between nerve cells in the brain, it assists the immune system at fighting off bacteria and defending against unwanted cell growth, it regulates blood pressure by dilating arteries, and has solid evidence to show just how effectively it can do so. It also reduces inflammation, Improves sleep quality, improves your sense of smell, works positively in your gut by increasing the health of your essential gut flora and fauna.
As if this is not enough, Beetroot has more antioxidant properties than almost all other common vegetables. This is because they contain phytonutrients called betalains. Research has shown betalains to be good cancer fighters and is brilliant to help you to detox.
And, finally, as everyone interested in body building or exercises will tell you, it Increases your endurance and strength. Here’s some research and confirmation that it was used by members of Team GB in the 2012 Olympics. http://www.exeter.ac.uk/news/research/title_290840_en.html
Eat it raw, drink it (up to 100mls per day is a safe level for most), cook it – however you prefer it, just make sure you add it to your diet now that the season is changing.
Beetroot, Beta vulgaris is a plant used in herbal medicine regularly because of its health benefits, added to a prescription with other herbs. If you have an on-going, chronic condition, call me or find a medical herbalist near you through the National Institute of Medical Herbalists