8. Blood Vessel Health
It should come as no surprise that just as beets provide benefits for heart health, they also contribute to overall cardiovascular wellness. This is due in part to the potassium to sodium ration of beets. Sodium hurts cardiovascular health by causing the blood vessels and arteries to grow more rigid, narrow, and generally brittle. This leads to increased blood pressure because the heart must work harder under such conditions. Potassium, on the other hand, makes blood vessels much more flexible and stretchy. Likewise, the increase of nitrous oxide also plays a part in improving endothelial(lining of the blood vessels) function.
Beets also contain betaine, which can help fight inflammation. This means that beets can provide relief for pain associated with inflammation and infections. While inflammation isn’t an illness itself, it is a component of many diseases, given that it is a part of the body’s immune response. While it helps to hinder the infection, inflammation can cause pain, swelling, and redness in the affected area. Additionally, the value of beets as an anti-inflammatory food is even more critical because chronic inflammation can lead to serious health issues, including diabetes and heart disease, which, as mentioned, beets can also fight directly.
The betaine presence within beets also helps to protect the body from cancerous activity. Like most antioxidants, betaine helps prevent the damage caused not only by oxidation but also free radicals. Left unchecked, such elements would cause considerable damage to cells, leading them to malfunction. However, research has found that certain beetroot extracts have been shown to interfere with the development of tumors because of their cytotoxic effects. At the very least, beets could play a role in reducing the damage caused by other cancer treatment options, which would ultimately lead to a better quality of life for cancer patients.Related: 8 Fruits With Anti-Cancer Benefits