Beets: Colorful Guards Against Cancer and High Blood Pressure
While these root vegetables are available all year, you'll find the youngest, most tender ones from June through October.
They contain several disease-fighting phytonutrients
, including the pigment betacyanin, which gives them their distinctive hue. Beets are also a good source of folate, which guards against birth defects, colon cancer and osteoporosis, and are high in fiber and beta-carotene. And a study in the journal Hypertension
showed that beet juice reduced participants' blood pressure.
If you think you don't like beets, try pairing them with contrasting ingredients. That can be a salty, creamy cheese (e.g., goat or blue), toasted nuts (e.g., walnuts or almonds)—or both, as in this Roasted Beet Salad with Arugula, Pistachios and Goat Cheese
. Another idea: this delicious dip
for potato chips that also makes a nice accompaniment to steak.