I was really excited with finding a recipe for beets that I actually loved (Beet and Feta Burger ) and have been searching for more ways to enjoy these beautiful gems (beet chips anyone?!) . I’m so excited about beets that I even planted some seeds in my garden for the first time. – Wish me luck!
*I have had several people asking where I got the plant signs that I use for the square foot garden. I purchased these from Amazon – and they even come with a special paint pen. The signs are so useful when the plants are just coming up and I’m trying to decide if it is a weed or the plant I want.
Beets are gaining popularity and are working their way to the top of the nutrition list. More and more research is popping up linking beets to increased athletic performance.
Beets contain a large amount of inorganic nitrates. These compounds are the precursor to a very important molecule that our body needs to function- Nitric Oxide. Among other roles, nitric oxide helps to increase the size of blood vessels to allow more oxygen flow.
Beets aren’t the only food with high nitrate content. Aruguala, spinach, lettuces, radishes and bok choy are also great sources. Try adding a handful to your morning smoothie or evening roasted vegetables.
Beets are not going to make you fast on their own, but for the athlete that cares about marginal gains, they could provide the race winning boost. New products such as concentrated beet shots now make it convenient to consume on race day, and it’s ideal to do so 2-3 hours before the gun goes off. Experiment in your own training to see what works for you.
FYI: there are some side effects to consuming beet juice. The dark-red color of the juice often makes its way into your urine, changing it to a pinkish hue. Though harmless, it’s a bit unsettling if you haven’t seen it before. Second, if you have a history of kidney stones or are at risk for them, you should avoid beets and beet juice, as they are high in oxalates, a chemical which can crystallize in the kidneys.
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