Beetroot in Pregnancy – Health Benefits and Side Effects
Beetroot is, no doubt, a healthy root vegetable that is consumed all over the world. It also proves useful to pregnant women. If you’re pregnant and enjoy eating beetroot find out how it can help you. Read on to know about the benefits of eating beetroot and the various ways to consume it.
Amazing Benefits of Consuming Beetroot During Pregnancy
Beets are rich in many nutrients and components that are helpful for the growing foetus. Some of the benefits of consuming beetroot during pregnancy include:
1. Boosts Immunity
The antioxidants present in beetroot may help improve your immunity and protect against infections during pregnancy.
2. Lowers the Risk of Osteoporosis
Pregnant women are known to be at a higher risk of osteoporosis – a condition that makes the bones brittle and weak. Beets have a good portion of silica and calcium, which can keep your teeth and bones strong.
3. Regulates Metabolism
Beets are a rich source of potassium, hence, consuming them can balance your electrolytes and regulate metabolism. They are also known to maintain blood pressure levels during pregnancy.
4. Prevents Inflammation
Betaine, an anti-inflammatory agent present in beetroot, prevents inflammation, pain and swelling in the joints during pregnancy.
5. Helps Maintain the Blood Sugar Levels
Beetroot, being a low-glycemic food, takes longer to convert into glucose and absorb into the blood. This can help maintain your blood sugar levels.
6. Aids Fetal Development
Rich in folic acid, beetroot promote healthy growth and development of your baby. They also aid in developing your baby’s spinal cord and brain too.
7. Promotes a Healthy Liver
Betacyanin present in beets can help detoxify your liver and blood. It also eliminates fatty acids and toxins from your body, ensuring a healthy pregnancy.
8. Provides Vitamin C
The Vitamin C content in beetroot aids in the absorption of iron and paves the way for a healthy pregnancy and delivery.
9. Prevents Birth Defects
Folic acid present in beetroot promotes the growth of healthy tissues and foetal development. It also prevents birth defects like spina bifida by ensuring optimal development of the spinal cord.
Are There Any Risks Associated With Eating Beetroot During Pregnancy?
Despite their numerous health benefits, there are a few side effects of consuming beetroot during pregnancy:
- Beetroot contains betaine, and if consumed in excess, it may cause vomiting, nausea, diarrhoea, and other gastrointestinal problems.
- The nitrate content in beets can cause fatigue and weakness during pregnancy.
- Consuming beetroot in excess may also lead to a condition called beeturia which can turn your urine and stools red in colour.
- The oxalate content in beetroot may cause kidney stones if consumed in excess.
How to Add Beetroot to Your Pregnancy Diet
Once the morning sickness and nausea subsides, you’ll be able to eat without feeling the urge to throw up. This is when you can start adding beets, along with other vegetables, to your diet. Eating beetroot in the second trimester is a great way to stack up on the nutrients that promote a healthy pregnancy and childbirth. Here are a few unique beetroot recipes you can try your hand at:
1. Beetroot Juice
Beetroot juice is loaded with vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants. It can be very beneficial during pregnancy. Find out how you can make beetroot juice.
- Beetroot (raw/ boiled) – 1-2 (cut into small pieces)
- Ginger (grated) – an inch
- Lemon juice – 1 tbsp
- Water as required
- In a blender, take beetroot, add the grated ginger, and some water, and blend to smooth paste.
- Strain the liquid into a glass.
- Add a tbsp of lemon juice and give it a stir and drink.
2. Beetroot Salad
There’s nothing more delicious and nutritious than a beetroot salad. If you want to include beetroot salad in your pregnancy diet, here’s a recipe you can try.
- Medium-sized beetroot (peeled, boiled and cut into cubes) – 1-2
- Paneer cubes/ Hung curd – 1 cup
- Curry leaves – 4-5
- Mustard seeds – 1/2 tsp
- Oil – 1 tbsp
- Black pepper to taste
- Salt to taste
- In a large bowl, take the boiled beetroot cubes and paneer cubes/ hung curd.
- Add in the salt and black pepper, and mix well.
- Now, heat a wok and add oil to it.
- Once the oil is hot, add mustard seeds and curry leaves.
- Let them splutter and after 10-15 seconds transfer this tempering on to the salad. Cover the bowl with a lid.
- Mix well after a few minutes then enjoy your beetroot-paneer salad.
While it’s important to consume beetroot during pregnancy, it shouldn’t be consumed in excess. Limit your beetroot intake to one a day. Better yet, consult your gynaecologist or nutritionist before making it a part of your pregnancy diet.
Also Read: Vegetables to Eat During Pregnancy