I don’t like beets. Really, I don’t. If you take a look at my garden each summer you probably wouldn’t guess that because I usually have rows of them growing. (Except last year, I started the garden season with rows of them before they became deer food)
Beets are really good for you. I personally think they taste like dirt but they do have their health benefits. They are a great source of vitamin C. Beets are good for heart health as well as they contain betaine.
So, being the good health nut I am we eat them. Through out the summer we eat the greens. My kids enjoy the greens sauteed with butter and garlic. (Have I told you my kids are nuts?) We also add the tops to green smoothies.
I try to save the actual beets for fall. I let them stay in the ground as long as I can as they can handle cold and frost. Before our first snowfall, I dig them up and store them in our barn.
I usually can many of them. In fact, I had a wise friend tell me that buying 50 pounds of beets for $10 was a good idea. (To replace the ones the deer had feasted on, can you tell I’m kind of bitter about this? ) It was a good idea, truly, however, if you haven’t canned beets then you don’t know the joy of having a purple stained kitchen. It was worth it when I was done, but I may have whined a lot through the process.
Okay, back to beets. Something that we had gotten away from was consuming cultured foods and beverages at our house. Since I am working on healing my Hashimoto’s, we are adding cultured foods back in to rotation. (Providing good bacteria for the gut is key in helping the healing process of an autoimmune disease)
We used to have beet kvass in our frig at all times and we do again. According to Sally Fallon in Nourishing Traditions,“Beet kvass is valuable for its medicinal qualities and as a digestive aid. One four ounce glass, morning and night, is an excellent blood tonic, promote regularity, aids digestions, alkalizes the blood, cleanses the liver and is a good treatment for kidney stones and other ailments.”
I am not going to post how to make beet kvass as there are lots of versions floating around. You can even find some dairy free alternatives as the the Nourishing Traditions recipe calls for whey. I have done both and think they both taste about the same, like salty dirt.
However, this salty, dirt tasting beverage is worth keeping around. I once avoided a nasty stomach bug that my family came down with and I credit that to sipping on beet kvass through out the day.
Currently though, I am most impressed with beet kvass’ ability to tone down heartburn. Unfortunately, I’m working through a bit of a Hashimoto’s flare up and I am so to have heartburn more often than I’d like. (I really need to give up nightshades as my digestion system seems to revolt when I consume tomatoes) But, when I am having heartburn just a few ounces of beet kvass takes it away. AMAZING! In my book anything that can help with heartburn is a winner.
As a good friend once said to me, “I don’t like to pay my bills but I do it anyway”, I will continue to eat beets and drink beet kvass as the benefits far outweigh the taste.
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