Q. Tell me more about beets. We’ve never really eaten them at my house (besides school lunches decades ago). I imagine they have health benefits.

A. While they may not be a common staple at your house, beets are loaded with nutrition benefits. From liver support and increased exercise performance, to better bones and overall heart health, nothing beats eating a beet!

Beets are dietitian-approved for many reasons — mainly because they are a natural, energizing food that relaxes blood vessels for easier blood flow and oxygen delivery through the body. A single beet (a diameter of 2 inches) provides fiber, electrolytes to keep you hydrated, is rich in potassium which may help lower blood pressure, has less than 6 g sugar and only 35 kcals.

3 reasons why you should be eating beets

Heart-Healthy: Beets can help lower blood pressure by relaxing your blood vessels for easier blood flow and increasing oxygen delivery throughout your body. Beets are also rich in potassium.

Boost Athletic Performance: Beets are a natural, energizing food due to the power of nitric oxide. Nitric oxide boosts the volume and speed of oxygen and nutrient delivery throughout the body to help extend endurance, improve intensity and lessen recovery times. Beets are also rich in antioxidants and electrolytes, so skip the pre-workout mix and opt for beet juice. Adding beet powder or frozen riced veggies to your smoothie is another simple pick-me-up option!

Find Your Inner Foodie: Beets are a natural food-coloring option and an easy way to add a bright burst of color to any meal or dessert. From dips to salads and desserts, the ideas are endless! For more beet recipe ideas, check out www.hy-vee.com/recipes.

Don’t skip a beet – burger, that is! Ever thought about adding beets to your next veggie burger? Beets’ earthy, unique flavor is made for grilling. Savor the smoky flavor of a beet burger which rises to new heights when prepared on a grill.

Like the idea of beets, but don’t love their earthy flavor? Try adding fresh basil and feta cheese. The strong flavors allow the beet’s natural sweetness to come through, but help cover the mineral-rich after taste.

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