Monday, 13 January 2014

Food Therapy - Beet (Beta vulgaris) as antioxidants

Beet is best known as the beetroot or garden beet and belong to the amaranth family. It is a perennial plant with leafy stems growing to 1–2 m tall.
Most of heart diseases are caused by high blood pressure contributes to hardening of the arteries. High levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) build up in the arteries as a result of uncontrolled diet with high levels of saturated fat and trans fat. All these add to the formation of atherosclerosis lesions and eventually arterial blockage or anything that serves to damage the inner lining of blood vessels and impedes the transportation of oxygen and nutrition to the heart can be defined as a risk of heart disease.

Nutrients and chemical Constituents
1. Energy
2. Carbohydrates
3. fiber
4. Protein
5. Vitamin A
6. Beta-carotene
7. Trytophan
8. Thiamine (Vitamin B1)
9. Riboflavin (Vitamin B2)
10. Niacin (Vitamin B3)
11. Pantothenic acid (Vitamin B5)
12. Vitamin B6
13. Folate (Vitamin B9)
14. Vitamin C
15. Calcium
16. Iron
17. Magnesium
18. Copper
19. Phosphorus
20. Potassium
21. Zinc
22. Magnesium
23. Betacyanin
24. Betaine
25. Etc.
Beside the major chemical constituents betalains and phenolics, it also contains lesser amount of isobetanin, probetanin, neobetanin, indicaxanthin, vulgaxanthins, etc.

The Benefits
Betanin a main chemical constituent found in  beet juice has exerted its hepatoprotective and anticarcinogenic effects, through the activation of Nrf2 and subsequent induction of the expression of genes controlled by this factor(Activation of Nrf2 essentially opens the door for the production of numbers of our body’s most important antioxidants as excessive free radicals induce better antioxidant production) in non-tumour THLE-2 cell line. In simple words, betanin in beet root enhances the antioxidant effects in protection of the liver against the development of liver cancers and diseases.

Side effects
Oxalates Oxalates in the beet can cause kidney and gallbadder problem. People with above diseases should contact their doctor before consuming.
2. Increase the rick of lowering calcium absorption for people with weak digestive system.
3. Etc.

(1) What is NRF2?
(2) Betanin, a beetroot component, induces nuclear factor erythroid-2-related factor 2-mediated expression of detoxifying/antioxidant enzymes in human liver cell lines by Krajka-Ku┼║niak V, Paluszczak J, Szaefer H, Baer-Dubowska W.(PubMed)