Beets (Beta vulgaris) are members of the Chenopodiaceae (Goosefoot) Family. Ancient lore correlates this bright bulb as being governed by the planet Saturn and correlating to Earth energies. It has long been considered a food of beauty and energy and Aphrodite herself is said to have eaten beets to maintain her charms. Folk magic says that if two people eat of the same beet, they have a good chance of falling in love. If only love was so simple!
Beets, being round roots are said to have a downward energy, affecting the lower organs and especially benefiting the colon, kidneys, bladder, spleen and liver. Beets have long been used therapeutically to improve anemia as they help to build red corpuscles. The red pigment known as betaine helps to increase oxygen intake of the body. Beets are said to be both blood cleansing and blood building.
Other ailments that have been improved by the use of beets include constipation, infectious hepatitis, irregular menses, acne, lumbago, and low blood sugar. In the 1950's a Hungarian, Dr. Alexander Forenczi used large amounts of beets in treating patients with cancerous tumors. It was considered very successful. His research was published in the July 1986 International Clinical Nutrition Review.
Beets abound with nutrients. Included are beta-carotene, vitamins C, B, iron, calcium, phosphorus, sodium and manganese. Be aware that eating lots of beets may give you a red color in your urine or stools. Remember that you have been eating beets before rushing off to the emergency ward.
There are several varieties of beets; besides red there are yellow and white. Beet greens are delicious lightly steamed. They are richer in iron than spinach, but do contain high levels of oxalic acid, which makes them suitable just for occasional use. Since the 18th Century, beets have been grown as a source for sugar.
Try beets grated raw into a salad. They are lovely seasoned with a bit of honey and lemon. Carrot beet juice is a bona-fide energizing elixir. A beautiful beet soup, known as borscht is hearty and delicious. Seasonings that bring out the best in beets include dill weed, basil, parsley and tarragon.
A bit of dehydrated powdered beet makes an excellent natural food coloring.
Include more of the red ray in your regime with beets! This is a vegetable worth befriending.