Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Why Beets are Tops




The deep red-purple color of a beet root and neon green and vivid red combo on the leaves is sure to delight your senses. Do you realize bold colors are nature’s way of broadcasting beets’ earthy, sweet flavor and nutritional punch? 

I sense your body will be truly grateful whenever you munch on this veggie, because it’s flavorful, simple to prepare, and packed with health promoting benefits.

Read on to learn top reasons why this veggie is so good for you, and tasty ways to serve them to your family and friends. If you already eat beets, perhaps when you read how easy it is to use them, you'll eat them more often.

Beet greens are in the same botanical family as spinach and chard. Key nutrients in beet greens include fat-soluble vitamins A and K, as well as water-soluble vitamin C and vitamin B2. 

Beets are an excellent source of Copper, Fiber, and Folate. Minerals in beet greens include Iron (32% of the RDA), Magnesium, Manganese, Potassium, and Phosphorous. 

Beet greens are an excellent source of calcium and provide 25% of the recommended daily amount (98 milligrams per serving) of magnesium. Beet greens have a higher nutritional score than mustard greens and turnip greens, in that beet greens contain both calcium and magnesium and the other two don’t contain magnesium.

The root part of the beets, whether it's red-violet or orange-yellow contains powerful nutrient compounds or Betalains. These substances function both as antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents, ones that help prevent heart disease and stroke. 

Beets also work to support liver health, detoxification, immune function, bone health, and blood sugar balance. Read this information if you are diabetic. Then check with your health care provider and review whether Beets are a Good Food Choice for You.

Beets help protect against heart disease, birth defects, inflammation, and oxidative damage. Read this from Dr. Andrew Weil at Stumped by Oxidative Stress?

Beet root is an outstanding source of a key carotenoid, Lutein. Lutein plays an especially important role in eye health, including the health of the retina.

For those who are concerned with high blood pressure, a report of a meta-analysis of 16 trials published in The Journal of Nutrition in 2013 shows that drinking one glass of raw beet root juice a day is enough to significantly reduce blood pressure in patients with high blood pressure, even when drugs had little effect. Reduce Blood Pressure Naturally and  YouTube Video, "Benefits of Beet Root Juice" by Norman Walker provide information for you. 

If you don't know how to juice veggies, see this YouTube Video, "How to Lower Blood Pressure by Juicing Apple, Beets, and Carrot." Fresh beet juice is prepared and sold in some specialty markets and displayed in the refrigerated case of others. Juice bars are springing up all over, because of the increased awareness and demand for fresh squeezed veggie and fruit juices.

Beets are at the forefront of research for cancer prevention and cure. See this article from the National Institute of Health (NIH): Potential Benefits of Red Beetroot Supplementation in Health and Disease. NIH.


How to Prepare Beet Root, Stalk, and Beet Greens




Beets are incredibly versatile, and easy to prepare. Slip on rubber gloves and an apron before you begin to avoid staining your hands or clothing. Use a vegetable scrub brush to scrub the peel well. No need to remove the peel. It's the most nutrient dense area. Use a paring knife to separate the greens from the stalk and root, but do not discard. Any beet juice that remains on your cutting board can be easily removed by running utensils under cold water and washing. If you prefer, apply lemon juice before washing. Do the same with your hands.



Picture Shows Beets from Bottom to Top
beet root, beet stalk (stem) and beet leaves




The greens and stalk can be sautéed as you would spinach, chard, or kale. Add a drop of olive oil to your fry pan. Chop up small chunks of stem (stalk) and cook for 2 minutes until they soften. If oil has been absorbed add a few drops of water or liquid amino's (or low sodium soy sauce) to pan. Then continue cooking fresh beet greens in a matter or 2 or 3 minutes more. 

Eating beets is economical and environmentally savvy. Using the whole beet plant in various ways limits the amount of food you waste and reduces garbage dumped in the landfill. Any scraps that remain can be put into your compost pile.



Note: I always eat organic beet roots and beet greens, because organic means that food isn’t genetically modified or sprayed with toxic chemicals. It also isn’t grown in soil that contains chemical fertilizers.






Chop, dice, shred, or grate raw beets and add them to your favorite salad mix. Some mixed greens already contain baby beet greens, so you're way ahead of the game. Beets taste especially good when you sprinkle on fresh herbs like dill. Bring out beets' natural goodness by sprinkling on lemon or orange juice as well.




Ingredients are All Organic: Romaine, Beets, Red Pepper, Snap Peas, Carrots
with Creamy Bean Herb Dressing


I'm delighted Angela Thompson at Veganangela.com gave me the go-ahead to share a link to her recipe for Vegan Borscht (beet root soup). The Photo is from her too.

Vegan Borscht (Beetroot Soup) - Vegan and Gluten-Free
Serve this Soup Hot or Cold. It's So Good!



Beet roots can also be roasted, pickled, boiled, or steamed. No matter how you cook them, keep cooking time to 15 minutes or less to retain as many nutrients as possible.

My best tip is to eat beets and beet greens often. BEETS ARE TOPS!


Please comment below and if you'd like to, answer one of my questions:

Are you a beet expert or novice? Explain.

What amazing health benefit that comes from eating beet root and beet greens pleases you the most? Did you learn anything that was new?

Don't know about you, but I'm so excited to know that a veggie I LOVE is so healthy for me!


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Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Unique Valentine's Day Present Ideas




Sure. Flowers and chocolates are standard fare. But if you want to delight that special someone this Valentine's Day, a handcrafted gift can't be beat. It's original, thoughtful, and sure to be treasured.



Make it a One-of-a-Kind Treat



A wonderful thing I've learned from studying geology, is that mining for details about rocks has revealed unique rock formations. Check this out. Incredible-Rock-Formations. 

Rocks often contain semiprecious or precious stones within. Some attract the eye with vivid colors, even at first glance. Others look best when polished, cut, or crafted to bring out their hidden brilliance.

Research and investigation shows that specific crystals, stones, and rocks  have healing or balancing qualities. Others are energizing or encourage spiritual transformation. 

A neat gift for your Valentine is a piece of jewelry made of Amethyst Quartz. It's the official birthstone of February. Amethyst, in the rough, looks beautiful and decorative. A fine jeweler can mount a naturally formed crystal or rough stone into a setting that looks grand. 




Before you order personalized jewelry, it's best to check with the recipient to make sure he or she approves of your choice. 

Another way to get gift ideas that will be appreciated is to listen closely to those things your loved one says he or she likes or wishes they could own.

A third choice is to purchase a gift certificate for your partner, spouse, mother, sister, brother, or friend. Amethyst jewels can range in price, so be kind to your budget and purchase only ones you can afford.


Amethyst Crystals on Display at Arizona Lapidary

Like to learn why Amethyst Quartz is such a good bet? Its violet, purple, and lavender shades are eye-catching. Violet relates to the crown of the head and the crown chakra, the gateway for spiritual energy and creativity. Amethyst stones can help you transform set patterns and habits that concern ideas and emotions. It lessens anger and rage, fear and anxiety, and clarifies dreams. It also has magnetic energy and can accelerate all processes of mind, body, and spirit.




Make it Beautiful, a Gift to Brighten Daily Living



Check out the gorgeous hand crafted pottery from Deborah Davis, who is the designer and creator of By Hand By Design Ceramics.




"Hi, I'm Deborah Davis. I have loved seeing, touching, using, collecting, and making pottery for most of my adult life.

Eating from a handmade clay bowl or sipping tea from a clay mug are two of my life's greatest pleasures.

You are invited to explore, enjoy and ultimately use my hand built, textured clay platters, plates, bowls and mirrors in your daily life."



Make it Heart-shaped to Celebrate Love




A wonderful Tucson artist, Lisa Agababian, crafts stunning heart-shaped wall art, perfect for Valentine's Day. See More Designs at Fuchsia Designs Gallery of Hearts

Lisa Agababian/Artist

Lisa says, "I first touched clay at the age of seven, and it both relaxed, comforted and lit me up way back then, and does the same for me today.  

Transforming a ball of mud into something that speaks my truth, and communicates while touching the hearts of others, in simple and profound ways, is my bliss.  

I am absolutely grateful & joyful to be living my purpose, and offer workshops and classes as well.  This is my passion, my process, and my gift to YOU!  You may say I'm a dreamer, but thankfully I'm not the only one.  Spreading Peace, Beauty and Love through Self-Care, Self-Discovery, & Self-Expression with Clay!"




Please Note: I have supplied the gift ideas mentioned above, because I feel they are cool things to get as presents. I do not represent any person or business included above, and have not received compensation for showing these artifacts. Ordering, financial transactions, and shipping arrangements are to be made directly with the vendors.



Make it Colorful, Inviting, and Caring




Colors of Joy: A Woman's Guide for Self-Discovery, Balance, and Bliss by Nancy Andres



Is Your Spirit Lagging? Feel Drained, Overwhelmed, or Tapped Out?

Do you want to create Clarity and Ease in your Life and Relationships? 

Need Motivation to Go After Your Bliss?

Want Tips that Help You Remember to Love Yourself Unconditionally?





Colors of Joy: A Woman's Guide for Self-Discovery, Balance, and Bliss is a twelve-week journal program with Color-coded activities, Affirmations, Guided Journal Writing, and Tips for Self-care. Its Exercises are Fun, Designed to Raise Self-awareness, and Helps You Find Joy in Daily Living. 








Order an Autographed Copy of Colors of Joy Now!





What gift would you like to receive this Valentine's Day?



What's the most memorable gift you've ever given yourself?



How do you make each day special for yourself? For your loved ones?



Please comment below in the space provided.

Wishing my dear visitors, readers, and wonderful friends and family a Sweet, Juicy Valentine's Day! 




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