To have or not to have?

beetroot salad

If you were asked at a quiz if you should consume or avoid nitrates, what would you answer?  Recently published research from Britain has shown that nitrates, found in green leafy vegetables do in fact have a positive effect on health.  They found that it helps to thin the blood and helps oxygen circulation around the body.   I am sure you have heard of drugs that do such a thing, therefore this gives another string to the bow of the health benefits of eating vegetables.

But what vegetables contain nitrates?  Generally, ‘green leafy’ vegetables such as lettuce, cabbage and spinach, but also beetroot, carrots, green beans, parsley, radishes and celery.

Try this great summer recipe to enjoy some nitrate rich vegetables:

Beetroot and watercress salad

Serves 4

  • 2 medium beetroot
  • 2 handfuls watercress
  • 1-2 Tbsp crumbly blue cheese
  • 2 Tbsp French dressing
Place beetroot in saucepan, cover with water and bring to the boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20-30 minutes or until tender. Cool and then peel skin off. Slice beetroot into cubes or sticks. Place watercress in a bowl or platter, add beetroot and cheese. Drizzle with French dressing and serve.

To read more about the research: