Aa
Aa
A
A
A
Close
973741 tn?1342342773

Beets for Blood Pressure?

I read on another forum here that someone has used beets for their blood pressure.  I've started reading about this and studies say you can decrease your BP by 7% with beets!  How do you do this with beets?  Is this beet powder, supplements, beet juice (how does that taste?!), fresh beets????  How do you use beets to decrease blood pressure and does it work?
3 Responses
Avatar universal
Not sure how this would work.  Beets are a great food, but are they talking about beets with tops, the best way to eat them, or just the root?  We all know beets for iron and digestion.  The question would be, what is in beets that would slow down your blood flow?  I know hawthorn does this.  Other plants do this. Have no idea why beets would, so what's the nutrient in beets that does this?  On the other hand, if these people are substituting beets for foods that are known to help raise blood pressure, maybe that's what's happening.  The fact beets are pretty high in sugar makes one wonder, th0ugh.  And if you eat a lot of them, be prepared for more toilet time.
973741 tn?1342342773
This sounds like something you don't know too much about.  :>)  I read about it on another forum and since have read more about it and there does seem to be a correlation between using beets and lowing blood pressure successfully.  Beet juice, powdered beets are methods of ingesting.  Here is a thread to read on BP about it:  https://www.medhelp.org/posts/High-Blood-Pressure---Hypertension/BP-rising-again-question--thanks/show/3052266  ;
2 Comments
Personally the idea of drinking beet juice . . .  uck.
Mom, I asked you what nutrient in it does this.  Said, not sure how this would work, and asked.  Your answer was, sounds like something you don't know much about, which is pretty much what I said.  Not very nice, Mom, so I'll be snarky too.  You obviously didn't research it at all, because if you had you would have been able to answer my question, which was, what is the nutrient in beets that does this?  A short Google search found an NIH study, only on 15 people, but did find a fairly significant and quick, but short-term, lowering of BP due to the presence in beets of a fair amount of naturally occurring nitrates, which means the nutrient I was asking about is one we already know lowers BP by working on the blood vessels called nitric acid (also used to help with erections, but that's another story).  So that's what's in it that does this.  The reason you need to use beet juice is that it's best to get this nutrient in raw beets, as cooking may destroy some of it.  I would advise, therefore, anyone trying this to use only organically grown beets, as when you juice you use a lot more of something than when you eat it and therefore also get a lot of the toxic chemicals on and in food when you juice.  If you're not trying to just temporarily lower BP you'd have to drink it daily.  Beet juice, by the way, if you use organically grown beets, is quite sweet and tastes really good, especially if you mix it with, say, carrots.  In juice bars adding juiced beets was a way to make something like juiced kale taste better.  Most people don't eat a lot of beets in the US, but they do in eastern Europe.  Borscht is a fermented beet product they drink a ton over there, and Jewish people who moved to the US from there drink it.  My grandmother used to walk around with a bottle of borscht drinking it.  Of course, she also walked around with a bottle of Maalox, so there you go.  She was weird.  So that leads me to wonder if in a country like Russia where borscht is very popular if anyone has studied whether they have an inordinately low rate of high blood pressure.  It might be hard, because they also have such a large amount of alcoholism.  But I do wonder.  It would tell us if this works more than on the tiny numbers studied so far, which are mostly rat studies.  But certainly, given how healthful beets are -- and I love them -- it's certainly worth a try, though one who is on meds for BP would have to be careful not to lower it too much.  
973741 tn?1342342773
Well, I read enough that I made a purchase of powdered beet root and beet root juice.  Both sitting in my cabinet.  Afraid to try either one of them for fear of gagging but would like to figure out what to do with them.
2 Comments
I can only tell you that if you buy organic beets and juice them in combination with just about anything they are quite sweet and taste good.  Beets that are nor organic, like most food raised chemically, loses a lot of the sweetness probably partly due to using different seed stock not raised for flavor but also due to other reasons.  But as I warned, beets themselves when whole are full of fiber and can make you go potty.  Also turn your potty black or red, which can make you think you've got a bleeding ulcer.  I'm assuming the beet juice you bought has ejected a lot of the fiber, but if it's sitting in your cabinet and not your fridge, don't know how much potency is left in it.  Studies didn't say they were using dried beets which can be quite old by the time you use them or whether they used old beet juice rather than fresh.  Could make a difference, but don't know.
Actually, while nitric acid is involved, I mean to say nitric oxide.  If you're really not a beet fan, you can get nitrates from all kinds of vegetables, especially green leafy ones.  Dark chocolate is high in it.  So if you're not trying to treat high blood pressure without taking meds, and even if you are, there are a lot of sources for it.  You can also get it the way the body makes it, by taking the supplement arginine, an amino acid.  This is used by men a lot for body building and, as I hinted at before, sexual performance.  I'm guessing the beet juice thing is there for those who need to get a great deal of this nutrient because of a health concern.  But don't overdo it, this is also an ingredient of smog and you don't want to overdo it.  The body needs enough, but too much is deadly.  So don't anyone decide to mainline beet juice.  You always need enough, not go overboard, whether it's with protein or with nitric oxide.  But it's a reason I mentioned that juicing most roots is best if you add in the greens.  Beets with tops will do you even better than just juicing the beets, because again, leafy greens are a very good source as well and also contain high levels of antioxidants, which also protect the integrity of blood vessels.  
Have an Answer?

You are reading content posted in the Nutrition Community

Top Healthy Living Answerers
Avatar universal
Arlington, VA
Learn About Top Answerers
Didn't find the answer you were looking for?
Ask a question
Popular Resources
14 super-healthy foods that are worth the hype
Small changes make a big impact with these easy ways to cut hundreds of calories a day.
Forget the fountain of youth – try flossing instead! Here are 11 surprising ways to live longer.
From STD tests to mammograms, find out which screening tests you need - and when to get them.
Tips and moves to ease backaches
Here are 12 simple – and fun! – ways to boost your brainpower.