Beets are one of the more underrated health foods out there. They are a great source of phytonutrients that can help protect against heart disease and certain cancers. Like most vegetables, beets can be juiced for a fast and easy way to ensure you’re getting all of those valuable nutrients. Specifically, the juice from beets is rich in antioxidants, and a new study has indicated that it can actually help keep your blood pressure low.
NutraIngredients.com reported the study found “consumption of beetroot juice every day could help to reduce blood pressure.”Read more about managing your blood pressure
The study was led by Professor Amrita Ahluwalia from The Barts and The London Medical School in the United Kingdom. Ahluwalia and her research team concluded that “people with high blood pressure who drank 250ml of beetroot juice experienced a decrease in blood pressure of about 10 mm Hg.” The study involved seven men and eight women “who had a systolic blood pressure between 140 to 159 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg), did not have other medical complications and were not taking blood pressure medication.” The participants drank about 250 mL of either water or beetroot juice which contained a low quantity of nitrate. Their blood pressure was subsequently monitored over the next 24 hours.
The beet juice itself contained “about 0.2g of dietary nitrate, levels one might find in a large bowl of lettuce or perhaps two beetroots. In the body the nitrate is converted to a chemical called nitrate and then to nitrate oxide in the blood. Nitric oxide is a gas that widens blood vessels and aids blood flow.”
Professor Ahluwalia and her team concluded that when “compared with the placebo group, participants drinking beetroot juice had reduced systolic and diastolic blood pressure – even after nitrate circulating in the blood had returned to their previous levels prior to drinking beetroot.” They added that “the effect was most pronounced three to six hours after drinking the juice but still present even 24 hours later.”Read more about beetroot bread
Photo Credit: Freshtopia.net