Botanical Name :: Beta vulgaris
Indian Name :: Chukandar
The red beet, commonly known as garden beet, is a juicy root vegetable. It is distinguished by its individual flavour. It is more colorful than other root vegetables. Beets have several varieties, which are grouped according to their shapes. They are flat, short top shaped, deep oblate to round, globular to oval, half long and long The two varieties, most commonly grown in India are Crimson Globe and Detriot Dark Red, both belonging to the globular to oval group.
Origin and Distribution of Beet Root
Beet is believed to be a native of the Mediterranean region Europe or around West Asia. It has been used as a vegetable for the last 2,000 years, even by early Greeks and Romans. It is now widely distributed in the tropics and is cultivated in the Caribbean, Malaysia, Indonesia, philippines, Central, East and West Africa. In India it is cultivated for its nutritious roots.
Food Value of Beet Root
This vegetable is a good tonic food for health. It contains carbohydrates, mainly in the form of sugar, and it has a little protein and fat. Beet is taken in a variety of ways. They are widely used in salads and in the preparation of pickles and chutney. They are also baked like potatoes or boiled, steamed or cooked. They should be thoroughly washed before boiling and the skin should be removed before use. The leaves, like all green vegetables, should be cooked with a small amount of water and for only a short time. The fresher the beets, the better the flavor and the Quicker they cook. The beet juice is considered as one of the be&t vegetable juice. It is a rich source of natural sugar. It contains sodium, potassium, phosphorus. calcium, sulphur. chlorine, iodine, iron, copper, vitamin B1, B2. niacin. B6, C and P. This juice is rich in easily digestible carbohydrates, but the calorie content is low. The protein factors or amino acids are good in both quality and quantity.
Minerals and Vitamins
|Moisture – 87.7%||Calcium – 18 mg|
|Protein – 1.7%||Phosphorus – 55 mg|
|Fat – 0.1%||Iron – 1.0 mg|
|Fibre – 0.7%||Vitamin C – 10 mg|
|Minerals – 0.8%||Good amount of vitamin A & B|
|Carbohydrates – 8.8%||Small amount of Vitamin B Complex|
|* Values per 100 gm’s edible portion||Calorific Value – 43|
Natural Benefits and Curative Properties of Beet Root
Beets are of great therapeutic value. They have properties to clean the kidneys and gall bladder. Being rich in alkaline elements, potassium, calcium, magnesium and iron. they are useful in combating acidosis and aid the natural processes of elimination.
- Anemia:- Red beet juice is associated with human blood and blood forming qualities. Due to its higher content of iron, it regenerates and reactivates the red blood cells, supplies fresh oxygen to the body and helps the normal function.of vesicular breathing i.e. normal breath sound. It is thus extremely useful in the treatment of anemia. According to Dr. Fritz Keitel of Germany, “The juice of the red beet strengthens the body’s powers of resistance and has proved to be an excellent remedy for anemia. especially for children and teenagers where other blood forming remedies have failed.
- Digestive Disorders:- Beet juice is beneficial in the treatment of jaundice. hepatitis, nausea and vomiting due to biliousness, diarrhea and dysentery Adding a teaspoonful of lime juice to this juice increases its medicinal value and can be given as a liquid food in these conditions. Fresh beet juice mixed with a tablespoonful of honey taken every morning before breakfast helps the healing of gastric ulcer. Leaves of beet root. eaten as green-leafy vegetable and its juice, mixed with lime juice. are also valuable in jaundice and gastric ulcer. The juice should be taken once daily.
- Constipation and Piles:- The cellulose content of the beet acts as a bulk residue. increases peristalsis -i.e. wavelike movement and eases the passage of stool. Its regular use thus prevents habitual constipation. A decoction of the beet root is highly valuable in chronic constipation and haemorrhoids. i.e. piles. It may be given in doses 01 haH to one tumblerful at bed time.
- Circulatory Disorders:- The beet juice is an excellent solvent for inorganic calcium deposits. It is, therefore, valuable in the treatment of hypertension. arteriosclerosis. heart trouble and varicose veins
- Kidney and Gall Bladder Disorders:- The beet juice. in combination with the juice of carrot and cucumber, is one of the finest cleansing material for kidneys and gall bladder. It is highly beneficial in all disorders relating to these two organs.
- Skin Disorders:- The water in which beet roots and tops have been boiled is an excellent application for boils. skin inflammation and out breaks of pimples and pustules. The white beet is better for this purpose. For an irritable skin the body should be sponged down occasionally with a mixture of three parts of beet water to one part of white vinegar. This mixture is also useful as a skin wash in cases of measles and eruptive fevers.
- Dandruff:- The decoction of beets mixed with little vinegar can be used externally to cleanse scurf or dandruff from the head. For dandruff, the beet water should also be massaged into the scalp with the ginger tip every night.