Beetroot is a potent dietary source of health-promoting chemicals with therapeutic potential for many pathological conditions. Beetroot and its compounds have been shown to have rich antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and vascular-protective properties. Beetroot supplementation has therefore been shown to lower blood pressure, reduce inflammation, prevent oxidative stress, maintain endothelial function, and improve cerebrovascular hemodynamics.
Is Beetroot Acidic?
Beetroots are acidic in nature as their pH scale rating is less than 7. The pH of raw beets found in supermarkets or farmer’s markets ranges from 5.3 to 6.6. Canned beets are more acidic than fresh, raw beets. The pH of canned beets ranges from 4.9 to 5.2.
However, beetroots don’t taste overly sour because the above values are closer to neutral than extreme acidic.
Is Beetroot Healthy?
Loaded with Nutrients
Like many other vegetables, beetroots are high in nutrients but low in calories. Beets contain less than 44 calories per 100 grams. In addition, vitamin C, vitamin B6, potassium, magnesium, folate, and iron are abundant in beetroot.
Beets have been shown to reduce blood pressure in certain persons. Beet nitrates are naturally occurring chemicals found in the beetroot. These nitrates help in lowering blood pressure. Your body converts nitrates to nitric oxide in a chain reaction, which helps with blood flow and blood pressure.
Improves Athletic Performance
The nitrates in beets are known to boost mitochondrial efficiency. In a 2012 study, those who consumed beet juice exhibited increased plasma nitrate levels, which is known to improve athletic performance.
According to one study titled “Effects of Beetroot Juice Supplementation on Cardiorespiratory Endurance in Athletes – A Systematic Review,” published in the National Library of Medicine, athletes had an enhanced performance by about 3% over a 2.5-mile duration after consuming beet juice. The study showed nitrate levels often peak two to three hours after eating beetroot. So, drinking beetroot juice two to three hours before exercise can greatly improve athletic performance.
Rich in Dietary Fibers
Due to a good level of fiber, beets can help ensure good digestive tract and gut health.
Supports Brain Health
As per research titled “Daily dose of beet juice promotes brain health in older adults,” published in ScienceDaily, patients with dementia were studied. The patients’ MRIs revealed that blood flow to the frontal lobes had risen.
Supports Weight Loss
Drinking beet juice may help in weight loss. The juice is minimal in calories (100ml juice contains 29 calories) and is fat-free. In addition, one can add it to smoothies because of the present vitamins and minerals.
Beet juice also contains antioxidants that can help improve the condition of the liver. Beet juice contains betaine, a chemical, which can aid in the reduction of fatty deposits in the liver. This antioxidant may even aid in the detoxification of your liver.
Can Those with Acid Reflux Have Beetroot?
Beets may have an acidic pH, but some other foods and beverages are far more acidic and cause severe acid reflux issues. Even though beets have an acidic pH, once, inside the body, they become alkaline. So those with acid reflux or heartburn can drink beet juice.
Further, as beets are high in fiber, there is evidence that consuming beets can help avoid acid reflux symptoms. This high-fiber vegetable is ideal for consumption if suffering from acid reflux.
For people with acid reflux tendency consuming cooked beets is an option. Cooked beets are more alkaline than raw beets, and they are considered safer for acid reflux. Adding to this, beets offer anti-inflammatory characteristics that benefit the body by reducing inflammation symptoms such as heartburn and chest pain.
However, at the same time, beets are heavy in sugar, and excessive amounts may induce acidity problems. Beets provide 9.20 grams of natural sugar per cup. Sugar takes a long time to digest, which might result in gas and stomach discomfort.
It is best to observe your body and symptoms and consume beet only if your body allows it.
Is it Healthier to Eat Raw or Cooked Beets?
Beets are well-known for their numerous health advantages. Many people, however, are unsure whether raw or cooked beets are better for them. Raw beets are healthier since they include vitamins and minerals.
Beets lose their beneficial vitamins and minerals when they are cooked. To reap the vitamin benefits of beets, consume them in raw or semi-cooked form.
Beets in Different Forms: Acidic or Alkaline?
Pickled beets have a higher sugar and salt content, detrimental to acidity. Pickled beets also contain an acidic preservative that increases the acidic content. As the pH range is mainly on the ingredients used in the recipe, it is challenging to establish if it is acidic or alkaline.
Canned beets are popular, as they are prepared beets nearly identical to pickled ones. Canned beets have a pH range of 4.3 to 4.6, making them overly acidic. A pH of 4.7 to 5.2 is seen in freshly canned beets, such as homemade canned beets.
The pH of golden beets ranges from 5.23 to 6.50. When it comes to nutrition, golden beets are similar to red beets. Golden beets have a sweeter flavor than regular beets. They have more sugar, making them acidic. In terms of pH, red and golden beets are nearly identical.
To summarize, canned beets are more acidic than raw ones, while cooked beets are less acidic than regular beets. Excessive consumption may result in dyspepsia. Dyspepsia is pain or uncomfortable sensation in the upper and mid-portion of the stomach area. Although raw and fresh beets are healthier than cooked beets, consuming cooked beets during acidity is a better option because they are easier to digest.
Domínguez, R., Cuenca, E., Maté-Muñoz, J. L., García-Fernández, P., Serra-Paya, N., Estevan, M. C. L., Herreros, P. V., & Garnacho-Castaño, M. V. (2017). Effects of beetroot juice supplementation on cardiorespiratory endurance in athletes. A systematic review. Nutrients, 9(1), 43. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu9010043
Jajja, A., Sutyarjoko, A., Lara, J., Rennie, K., Brandt, K., Qadir, O., & Siervo, M. (2014). Beetroot supplementation lowers daily systolic blood pressure in older, overweight subjects. Nutrition Research (New York, N.Y.), 34(10), 868–875. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nutres.2014.09.007