The vibrant red colour of beets are reflective of its vibrant health benefits. Beets are not only high in the immune-boosting vitamin C, but also contain essential minerals like potassium and manganese to support nerve and muscle function. Beets also contain lots of fiber to help clean out your digestive tract.
If you’ve ever paid close enough attention to the toilet bowl after consuming beets, you’ll know what I am talking about. Beets can provide insight into your digestive health by showing you your ‘transit time.’ Transit time refers to the time it takes for food to move through your digestive tract from the time it’s consumed, until it comes out the other end. Check out my ‘beet test’ in the tips below to figure out your transit time.
Naturally Nora Tips:
- The Beet Test: since beets are so vibrantly red, they stain your stool. Don’t panic if you see bright red in the toilet bowl after consuming beets. Instead, do a little experiment with yourself. Remember or mark down the time when you consumed this beet salad (or any other beet recipe) and see how long it takes for your stool to stain red. This will indicate your transit time (how fast or slow food moves through your digestive tract). A healthy transit time should be about 12-14 hours. If you are outside of this window, you can learn more about your gut health by downloading my Gut Health eGuide for FREE here.
- Pre Workout Fuel: Beets are a great way to get your stimulate your muscles prior to a workout. Beets are rich in dietary nitrates, which convert in the body to nitric oxide. Nitric oxide relaxes blood vessels, which increase blood flow to working muscles, prepping them for lifting, running, resistance training, and any other physical movement practice.
- Consumption Options:
- Lunch: I typically enjoy this salad for lunch. It’s light and increases blood flow not only my muscles, but also my brain to help keep me focused and alert for the afternoon.
- Dinner: pair this beet salad with your favourite fish or poultry dish for a wholesome, nourishing dinner.
- 4 large beets
- 4 tbsp olive oil, divided
- 1 small head of radicchio
- 1 small red onion
- 1 bunch radishes
- ⅓ cup fresh mint leaves, chopped
- ¾ cup crumbled queso fresco (or cotija)
- 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- Garnish: fresh parsley
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Trim the beets and place them in a baking dish. Drizzle the beets with 1 tablespoon of oil. Cover and roast for 30-35 minutes, until fork tender.
- Cut the head of radicchio into quarters. Remove the core and slice into thin strips. If you find radicchio too bitter for your taste buds, place it in a bowl of ice water for 20-30 minutes to reduce the bitterness.
- Slice the onion and radishes very thin. In a small bowl, whisk together 3 tablespoons of oil, vinegar, honey, garlic, salt and pepper.
- When the beets have cooled a bit, peel off the skin and slice them into thin wedges.
- Toss the radicchio, beets, onions, radishes, and mint with the vinaigrette.