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Why President Obama Should Give Beets a Second Chance

The Political Beet and President Obama

Word on the street is that President Obama doesn't like beets. His aversion to this veggie is so strong that beets were not planted in the first lady's victory garden. Similar to the broccoli debacle that marred George Bush, Sr.'s nutrition record, beet advocates are up in arms about the president's dislike of the red root veggie. I am impressed that the garden includes the main ingredient of salsa verde, the tomatillo, as well as chard and Thai basil, and I understand that not every type of produce can make it into the garden. There was a period in my life where I avoided beets myself, but I have learned to love them. Roasted, they make great side dish or topping on a salad. Grated finely, raw beets make a colorful garnish.

You can eat both the leaves and the roots of a beet, so they are a two-for-one kind of plant. High in folate, beets are also high in betaine, which works with folate to help reduce inflammatory compounds that can damage your arteries and increase your risk of heart disease. Plus, the pigment that gives beets their crimson color has been identified as a potent cancer fighter in laboratory mice. Since beets offer all these health benefits, maybe our president will give beets another try? Although, it seems like he already has a lot on his plate.

Which side of the line do you fall on? Are you pro-beets, or anti?


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