Graham Beaton BHSc, ND
Ottawa Naturopathic Doctor

Beets are a root vegetable with two parts you can eat – the root and the green leaves. Beats are a good source of fiber (which helps with cholesterol and blood sugar), potassium (which helps with blood pressure), iron and folate. While folate is more concentrated in the leaves, it is also found in the root and is an essential nutrient for pregnant women.

Beets can be cooked or served:

  • As a salad – try tossing grated beets with apples in a lemon dressing or in a conventional beet salad
  • As diced cooked beets – try them on their own or mixed with cooked lentils or with brown/wild rice
  • Substitute beets for carrots and make a beet cake
  • Add to coleslaw
  • Sandwiches – top meat or poultry sandwiches with sliced/grated cooked beets and onions or apples.
  • Roasted beets – try roasting the beet with thyme to infuse some extra flavour
  • Pickled beets
  • Salsa – try making a beet salsa with avocado and a blood orange
  • Soup – a chilled beet soup with dill is an excellent starter to a meal
  • Risotto – use beets to liven up a risotto

While most people just eat the root, the beet greens can be an excellent leafy side dish. Beet greens are a good source of fiber, are high in calcium, iron, vitamin A, C and K.

Beet greens are often prepared by cooking them in a skillet over a medium-high heat for 3 minutes. Try sautéing them with garlic, ginger and a pinch of salt in a covered pan for about 3 minutes. Then drizzle with olive oil. You can also add toasted sesame seeds or toasted quinoa for some additional protein and a bit of crunch.

If you feel like you are struggling to keep your health related New Year’s resolutions, would like help improving your diet, losing weight or addressing cholesterol, diabetes or blood pressure, give Graham a call at 613-290-6115.

Graham Beaton is a Naturopath in Ottawa at the Ottawa Collaborative Care Clinics.

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