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Spotlight on Beets

Nutritional highlights and Love Beets product review

I’m trying out a product/food review feature on the blog (let me know what you think!). To start – a little spotlight on a food I’ve always loved and (finally) is super trendy right now – beets.

I grew up living off Greek food. My town in Michigan had a Greek restaurant on every corner. Seriously, up until college, I thought American food was Greek food. My go to was always a Greek salad with cucumber, feta, onions, chickpeas, grilled chicken and beets. These gorgeous pink vegetables have been seriously underrated until now - they’re finally getting some of the attention they deserve and I couldn't be happier about it.

What

Beets have a gorgeous pink color, a sweet taste, are incredibly versatile, and are nutritionally loaded – which is why, finally, we’re seeing beets have a major moment right now. They can be spiralized into noodles, eaten raw in a salad or made in a stunning bright hummus. Beet powder is even more fun to play with. Mix it into anything – smoothies, yogurt, or cream cheese for the ultimate pretty in pink meal or unicorn toast.

Why

Aside from the fact that I so obviously love beets, why, you might wonder, does their moment in the spotlight make me so happy? Easy - they’re a nutritional powerhouse. In just 1 cup of beets, you get SO many nutrients that are vital to our daily function.

Here’s a breakdown:

  • Fiber – one of my favorite nutrients and the ultimate way to feel full and keep the GI tract regular. One cup of beets will give you almost 4 grams of belly filling fiber.
  • Vitamin C – so important for immune health and even our skin; vitamin C helps form collagen and connective tissue and is one of the most effective antioxidants.  Beets are packed with this vitamin.
  • Potassium – I love potassium so much (hi, nutrition nerd).  It works with sodium to regulate water balance in the body (read: reduce bloat), helps our muscles contract, and can even help reduce blood pressure.  One cup of beets has nearly 500 mg of potassium which, if you don’t speak science, is a ton!
  • Folate – one of the most important nutrients we can get – especially for women. In the 90’s, the FDA actually started adding folic acid to bread because it’s so critical for women to get enough of this nutrient in pregnancy, and many simply weren’t getting enough. One cup of beets has nearly 40% of your daily needs! Imagine some beet hummus in a sandwich – folate powerhouse.
  • Phytosterols – these guys are awesome because they’re just as underrated as they are important. Phytosterols are basically naturally occurring plant compounds that are similar to cholesterol – so they end up blocking absorption of cholesterol and a result, lower cholesterol levels. Pretty cool, if you ask me!

How

Okay, so I’ve hyped beets up a ton, but obviously left out one kindaaa important detail – they’re a little hard to work with. If you’ve ever tried to roast beets on your own, they can be a bit messy to play with in the kitchen. And, even once you’ve roasted them, it’s almost impossible not to get that pink (or golden) color everywhere.

This is why I’m loving Love Beets products right now. They make a ton of different beet varieties that are pre-peeled and pre-cookedmeaning you get all the benefits of beets, without the hassle and mess. Their baby beets come in amazing flavors like honey + ginger and white wine + balsamic that you can quickly chop up and throw in a meal – literally no extra work at all to eat ‘em. If you’ve been following me on social media for even a week, you probably already know that I’m all about making healthy eating as easy as possible. Pre-packaged and pre-powdered (they sell a beet powder too!), stunning, and nutritionally-loaded Love Beets are basically my dietitian dream.

Curious about ways to use them? Check out my recipe for a double beet sandwich with Love Beets beet hummus using honey + ginger and sweetfire baby beets.

Recipe

Ingredients:

(For beet hummus)

1 package Love Beets honey + ginger baby beets

2 tablespoons tahini

Juice from 1 lemon

1 teaspoon chopped garlic

Salt and pepper to taste

(For beet sandwich)

1/4 cup your favorite lettuce

1/4 cucumber, sliced

1/2 tomato, sliced

1/4 cup red cabbage, chopped

2 Love Beet sweetfire baby beets, sliced

2 slices whole grain bread

1. To make the hummus, combine all hummus ingredients in a blender or food processor until smooth and creamy.

2. Spread 1-2 tablespoons of hummus on 1 slice of bread. Stack with lettuce, cucumber, tomato, red cabbage, and beets. Top with other slice of bread and enjoy (the messier, the better!).

Note: this blog post is sponsored by Love Beets. All thoughts/opinions are my own.

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