Beetroot, commonly known as beet or beets, is the new health food. We all know the health benefits of having them, either by roasting them, steaming them or even having them raw in the form of salads and juices.
Here are some lesser known facts about beets, which are bound to astonish you:
Beet as an Aphrodisiac: Did you know that the ancient Romans had Beetroot to incite feelings of arousal. Beets have a lot of ‘Boron’ content in them which is related to production of sexual hormones, like the estrogen and the testosterone. Beets are often referred to as the nature’s Viagra.
Beet as a colouring agent: Betanin, commonly referred as beetroot red is a red food dye obtained from beets. It is used fairly in colouring ice creams, sweets and candies. Due to the high content of the red colour compound Betanin, when eaten raw or in high quantity, beetroots cannot be broken down by our body so it may cause red urine or stool which is not harmful.
Breaking down tumors: Beets contain Betacyanin which is extremely effective in breaking down and eliminating tumors. Due to its high antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties, it helps prevent formation of cancerous tumors and is therefore an anti cancerous agent.
Treats stress and relaxes mind: Beetroots contain an element called Trytophan which creates a sense of well being, thereby relaxing your mind and consecutively lowering your BP. Did you know that Trytophan is also present in chocolates and we all know how we feel when we have chocolates, right?
Acts as Beauty Mineral: Beets are an excellent natural source of silicon, which is known as the beauty mineral as it supports the regeneration of the whole organism, thereby providing elasticity and youthful appearance of the skin, hair, and nails.
So what are we waiting for? Let’s get started, here is a recipe with beets you could try at home:
Marinated Beetroot with Grilled Goats Cheese
6 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
3 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp thyme leaves
4 raw beetroot, peeled and very thinly sliced on a mandoline or with a food processor slicing attachment
2 x 100g vegetarian goat’s cheese rounds with rind, halved horizontally
4 handfuls rocket
- Mix the oil, vinegar, sugar and thyme in a shallow dish and season well. Add the sliced beetroot and marinate for at least 1 hr or overnight, if you like.
- Heat grill to high. Season the goat’s cheese slices, then place on an oiled baking tray and grill for 2-3 mins until golden and melting.
- Lift out the beetroot, reserving the marinade, and divide between 4 plates. Top with the rocket, a round of goat’s cheese and a little more rocket. Drizzle with the marinade and serve.