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Unbeatable Beets in a healthy appetizer, and a dessert!

By Kylie Delfino

The beautiful deep red-purple colour of beets is largely a nutrient called betacyanin. Many studies have shown the potential for beet extract to prevent cancer by decreasing inflammation and mutations. In addition to being rich in betacyanin, beets are loaded with vitamins A, C and iron, as well as fibre – especially the greens.

Beets are high in sugar and can cause a spike in blood sugar if consumed on their own; however, when a high sugar fruit or vegetable is combined with protein or fibre, the uptake of sugar is slowed down, stabilizing blood sugar. That is why these cancer fighting recipes combine ingredients to balance macro nutrients, steady the insulin response in the body and optimize vitamin and mineral absorption.

Beet & Cashew Raw, Vegan “Yogurt”

Serve with fresh berries and chopped mint leaves, or freeze for a creamy summer time ice cream or ice pop.

½ cup raw cashews, soaked in water for at least 4 hours
½ cup raw grated beet
2 tbsp melted coconut oil
2½ tbsp agave syrup
½ tsp vanilla extract
Juice of half a lemon

  • Drain the cashews, rinse well and place in the food processor.
  • Add the remaining filling ingredients and process until completely smooth.
  • Pour into 250 mL Mason Jars. Place in the fridge or freezer for 1-2 hours and serve.
  • Will keep for 7 days in a capped Mason jar in the fridge.

Savory Roasted Beet Hummus

2 small roasted beets
1½ cup cooked chickpeas, or organic canned that have been drain and rinsed very well
Juice of half a large lemon
Sea salt and black pepper
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp cumin
2 large cloves garlic, minced (or more to taste)
2 tbsp tahini
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil

  • To roast beets: Toss chopped beets in olive oil, and bake in a 385 F preheated oven for 35 minutes, or purchased pre cooked organic beets.
  • Place roasted beets in the food processor and pulse until chopped.
  • Add remaining ingredients except for olive oil and blend until smooth.
  • Drizzle in olive oil as the hummus is being mixed.
  • If needed, add water to achieve desired consistency.
  • Add more sea salt or lemon juice to taste.
  • Will keep for 7 days in a capped Mason jar in the fridge.

Kylie Delfino, RHN is the Founder of The Nourished Self Nutrition Clinic, Ottawa, Canada. She is also the Clinical Nutritionist at The Ottawa Integrative Cancer Centre and developer of the Ottawa Regional Cancer Foundation Nourished Self Whole Food Anti-Cancer Education Program.

Published: June 25th, 2014