My second husband went to see a Naturopath at one point in his journey, and the naturopath told him to eat beets. He came home and told me that, and I had no idea what to do with a beet. I remembered eating those canned pickled beets as a kid, and I knew I wasn’t interested in eating that. He said she told him to boil them, slice them and toss them with olive oil, tarragon, sea salt, cracked pepper and balsamic vinegar. So I went out and bought beets and prepared them. I was surprised at how much I liked them. It became a staple salad in our household, and I still make it all the time.
Beets have lots of health benefits. Anything in nature with that deep purple color has got to be loaded with all kinds of vitamins. A quick search on the internet says that beets help prevent heart disease, birth defects and colon cancer.I know that beets provide a lot of energy. Runners everywhere are starting to drink beet “shots” before running for an energy boost. They also lower blood pressure, and I’ve read that some people have lowered their blood pressure by drinking a small glass of beet juice everyday. I love the taste of it in a juice. Remember that beets are the source of much of the table sugar in this country, so they are sweet. I roast them in the oven with olive and salt and pepper, and their sugars caramelize. They melt in your mouth they are so sweet. I get addicted to them when I cook them that way. My sister-in-law said she made a brownie recipe with beets this week. She didn’t like them, but the rest of her clan said they did.
An interesting fact about beets is that ancient cultures considered beets an aphrodisiac. One article I found called beets the Viagra of vegetables. The attached newsletter from Hallelujah Acres Health News says that an old abandoned brothel had a beet painted on the wall. Beets contain boron which is responsible for increasing the level of sex hormones in men and women. We all know testosterone is the key hormone for men’s sexual potency, and, as men age their testosterone levels drop. The answer? Eat more beets! Research shows that boron can increase levels by up to 50%. For women, beets help us metabolize and use estrogen which we all know decreases as we age. Estrogen is what keeps us from having all of those nasty menopause symptoms that can lower sex drive or desire. And, better estrogen use means less bone loss, too. Since beets lower blood pressure, I wonder if that may be one of the reasons beets are good for the sex life, especially for men. Isn’t high blood pressure a problem for men in sexual performance? Or is that just the medicines that work on it? I would think it would work the same for women. Virility is all about great blood flow. Whatever the reason, beets are a great natural food that seems to help us stay active in the bedroom!
I love to make a juice of beets and carrots. The first time I drank beet juice, I was a skeptic about juicing in general. It seemed like some kind of fad, and I wasn’t interested in spending all of that money doing it. But, I tried some beet and carrot juice, and my energy level went up exponentially and stayed that way all day. They also help with depression. I love them roasted with other root vegetables, and I love that balsamic vinegar and olive oil salad. I keep that cold in the refrigerator and snack on it whenever I want something sweet. I’m not a big fan of salads, but I do like that one. I also like them boiled with salt and pepper as a side dish. I’ve never tried Borscht, but I’ve always wanted to. It’s so pretty with that deep purple color.
Tomorrow I’m headed to the Farmer’s Market again. Last week, I got a big basket of the prettiest little beets you ever saw. I boiled them and sliced some to put in a salad today and used the rest for my usual refrigerator stash. They are easy to prepare. I boil them with the skin on. When they cool, the skin and tops just peel right off. You can also eat beet greens, and they are really healthy, too. But, I have to confess I rarely eat those. I prefer other greens like kale. I think I’ll get some more beets tomorrow for juicing. It might be a good time to boost my energy since I’ve cut out the coffee. I’m running the Crescent City Classic next weekend, so I might have to try out that sports “shot” idea. And, with all that beet juice flowing through my veins, who knows what kind of trouble I can get into? 🙂
If you are interested in trying beets, here are some recipes.