Did you know that heart disease is still the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States? Yepp. Unfortunately, it’s way too common that Americans are experiencing chest pain, strokes, atherosclerosis, and heart attack. The more common risk factors of heart disease are often experienced as high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
And, as I’ve shared in a previous post, navigating heart disease risks is something I’ve dealt with before. In my twenties, I was diagnosed with high cholesterol. Though I wasn’t overweight or diabetic, I didn’t always eat the healthiest and I wasn’t as active as I should have been. Heart health became a big concern for me after I found out that my LDL levels were high, while also knowing that heart disease runs in my family. I wanted to take care of this issue before it became a problem.
Your Health is Impacted by More Than Just Your Genetic Predispositions
Just because we have predispositions for a disease doesn’t mean we’ll automatically “get it.” We have to do our best to reduce events that would trigger the onset of these illnesses. Through our lifestyle and environmental factors, we can greatly impact the outcome of our health, despite our genetic predispositions.
SO––as I was studying to become a holistic nutritionist, sections around heart health were especially interesting to me. At some point, I stumbled upon the power of beets. Beets are vegetable roots that are incredibly nutritious and add a beautiful vibrant red color to any dish. They can be eaten raw in a salad or smoothie or roasted and sauteed in a heart-warming meal. When I learned about beets and their relationship to nitric oxide––I was intrigued!
Interested in Improving Your Stamina? Beetroot Juice!
Beets have a high concentration of nitrates, and in the body, the nitrates are converted to nitric oxide. Nitric oxide is a compound that dilates blood vessels, helps to regulate blood pressure, and improves circulation. When you increase your nitric oxide intake, you can have better quality sleep and even enhance athletic performance!
Since beetroot juice is known for its ability to improve stamina and energy, I tried a beetroot smoothie before working out one day and noticeably felt the difference! I drank my smoothie for about an hour and some change before working out, and I felt almost unstoppable in the gym. I legitimately noticed the difference in my endurance and energy levels. It felt too good to be true, and I’ve been in love with them ever since.
Here are some other great benefits of beets:
- Rich in folate, a vitamin that’s crucial for growth, development, and heart health (which is why it’s recommended for pregnant women, especially in the early stages)
- Beets contain phytonutrients known as betalains, which have an incredible amount of anti-inflammatory properties and antioxidants (can be lost if you cook beets too long, though).
- Great source of fiber, which helps to improve digestive health and promotes regular bowel movements. This is a good vegetable for those who deal with constipation or diverticulitis.
Beets are like a wonder root/vegetable! And perhaps the word is getting around, as I have seen more beet-based supplements and snacks in grocery stores … but are beets ever going to have a moment like kale? Funny how some vegetables seem to have their moment right?
Delicious Beet Smoothie Ingredients:
- (1 medium beet) Beet
- 1 tangerine
- ½ peeled carrot
- 1 whole or ½ Green Apple
- A few chunks of Pineapple
- Small slice of Ginger
- Squirt of some lime
- Irish seamoss
Do you know where you stand when it comes to your heart health? I encourage you to take THIS TEST from the Mayo Clinic to calculate your Heart Disease Risk (it’s good if you have your cholesterol levels + blood pressure info on hand. But try it!)
All images were captured by me. All rights reserved.
Eat for your heart health and work with crystals to open your heart chakra. One of the most important stones for Heart Chakra work is Rose Quartz, which opens the heart to all types of love – love of self, love of family, love of friends, romantic love. Because it is a type of quartz, Rose Quartz does have a high energy, but its vibe is also calming and soothing. Shop Rose Quartz bracelets here.
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