Whilst in South Africa I have become obsessed with my fresh juice. Luckily my two favourite cafe's in Stellenbosch do my fresh beetroot, carrot and ginger juice. Not only does this taste delicious, it is seriously healthy healthy.
"The two obvious nutrients most are aware of are vitamin A and beta carotenes. Vitamin A toxicity is possible with vitamin supplements and fish oils, but you cannot overdose on vitamin A with carrots while enjoying their extra large amounts of this vitamin.
Beta-carotene is also a major antioxidant. The vitamin A and beta-carotene help maintain vision along with the carrots' fair share of lutein. Beta-carotene also maintains epithelial tissue, the tissue surrounding internal organs. Epithelial tissues are susceptible to cancerous growths.
Carrots are also rich in poly-acetylene anti-oxidant falcarinol. Research at the University of Newcastle has shown carrot falcarinol destroys pre-cancerous cells in tumors. Carrots do help keep cancer away.
Carrots are deep soil root vegetables, and this enables them to absorb an abundant array of minerals. They are also rich in other vitamins, including the B vitamins and folates. Folate is the natural and safe provider of folic acid.
The list of nutrients doesn't really measure up to carrots' actual regenerative capacity, especially when juiced. Obviously, the unique synergy of its enzymes, vitamins, minerals, and flavonoids provides herbal healers with a magical remedy when juiced."
Research has shown that beetroot can help reduce blood pressure as well as its associated risks such as heart attacks and strokes. This is because the high content of nitrates in beetroot produce a gas called nitric oxide in the blood which widens blood vessels and lowers blood pressure.
Betacyanin, the pigment that gives beetroot its colour, is also an antioxidant. Antioxidants are believed to help reduce the oxidation of LDL cholesterol, in turn protecting artery walls and reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke.
Beetroot contains folic acid which is essential for normal tissue growth. Folic acid is crucial to the development of a baby’s spinal cord during the first three months of pregnancy and can help prevent spinal cord defects such as spina bifida. Beetroot also contains iron so is a fab pick-me-up for mums-to-be suffering from fatigue during pregnancy. Expectant mums must remember though that cooked beetroot has lower levels of folic acid than raw beetroot.
Beetroot contains the mineral silica. This helps the body to utilise calcium, which is important for musculo-skeletal health and reducing the risk of osteoporosis.
Beetroot contains soluble fibre, which has also been shown to have cholesterol lowering capabilities. It also contains carotenoidsand flavonoids, which help prevent LDL or ‘bad’ cholesterol from being oxidised and deposited in the arteries.
Stabilises blood sugar
Beetroot is virtually fat free and low in calories. Although it has a 'medium' GI (Glycaemic Index) of 64, It has an extremely low GL (Glycaemic Load) of 2.9 which means it’s converted into sugars very slowly and therefore helps to keep blood sugar levels stable.
Beetroot’s iron content means it’s good for those with anaemia and fatigue.
A recent study by Wake Forest University in North Carolina, USA has shown that the high content of nitrates in beetroot may also help fight the progression of dementia, as nitric oxide in the blood (produced by the nitrates in beetroot) also helps increase blood flow to the brain. Beetroot’s folic acid may also play a part as studies suggest it can help protect against Alzheimer’s and dementia.
The Benefits of Ginger:
1. Eat fresh ginger just before lunch to stoke a dull appetite and fire up the digestive juices.
2. Ginger improves the absorption and assimilation of essential nutrients in the body.
3. Ginger clears the ‘microcirculatory channels’ of the body, including the pesky sinuses that tend to flare up from time to time.
4. Feeling airsick or nauseous? Chew on ginger, preferably tossed in a little honey.
5. Ginger helps reduce flatulence!
6. Tummy moaning and groaning under cramps? Munch on ginger.
7. Reeling under joint pain? Ginger, with its anti-inflammatory properties—can bring relief. Float some ginger essential oil into your bath to help aching muscles and joints.
8. Got a surgery done? Chewing ginger post-operation can help overcome nausea.
9. Stir up some ginger tea to get rid of throat and nose congestion. And when there’s a nip in the air, the warming benefits of this tasty tea are even greater!
10. Bedroom blues? Try adding a gingery punch to a bowl of soup.