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Beetroot Benefits for Health and Sports

With a 16% improvement in sports performance, it’s easy to understand why top athletes are leveraging beetroot benefits.  Anyone who trains regularly in any type of sport or intense exercise might also want to explore the benefits of beetroot. Studies on runners, cyclists and other types of athletes have demonstrated that beetroot juice has the power to increase oxygen potential, a key factor for pushing harder and going longer. Beetroot juice works to raise nitric oxide levels in the body, that pumps key nutrients and oxygen to the lungs and necessary muscles. By adding beetroot juice to a well-balanced diet, anyone can take these athletic benefits and turn them into everyday optimized health. 

 

Beetroot Juice Increases Nitric Oxide Levels

Shortly after consuming beetroot juice, nitric oxide levels in the body begin to increase. This supports circulation, strengthens muscle contractions, and helps the lungs increase oxygen uptake. For anyone who takes part in a sport that requires high cardiorespiratory endurance, it’s a great addition to help improve stamina. Gas exchange and mitochondrial biogenesis (the creation of more structures that convert food to energy in cells) are both improved with raised nitric oxide levels, offering further beetroot benefits for athletes. When performing over long distances, supplementing the diet with beetroot juice can increase time to exhaustion. This is particularly useful for long-distance runners and cyclists, who often face fatigue partway through a race.

 

Nitric Oxide Is a Natural Energy Booster

Cells need oxygen to produce energy. For people who rely on caffeine to get through a long day or training session, beetroot juice is a natural alternative to this stimulant, and delivers increased oxygen and sustained energy. Nitric oxide works to improve body functions, which impacts how oxygen is used within the body. It supports healthy blood flow and delivers nutrients to the body throughout the training session or event, making it easier to continue even during the most demanding sports. The muscles generally don’t fatigue as quickly with more oxygen, which is ideal for long days, training, events, or games that span hours in length and require optimal energy. 

 

Beetroot Benefits Kick in Quick

Beetroot Benefits Kick in Quick

One challenge for athletes is finding a supplement that will act quickly before a training event or race. Drinking beetroot juice just 90 minutes before a workout has the potential to make a substantial difference in performance. It can quickly work to improve endurance and strength. When supplementing the body with nitrate rich beetroot, nitric oxide gas is quickly produced and distributed throughout the body. While it only takes 90 minutes to kick in, studies show that peak nitric oxide levels can be experienced 3-5 hours after ingestion. 

 

Beetroot May Support Brain Function

To excel in sports requires more than speed and muscle mass; it also requires a brain that is agile and fully functioning and able to respond quickly to new stimuli or sometimes unexpected changes in the environment.

A healthy brain is critical for athletes, and beetroot juice may support healthy blood flow and oxygen to the brain. Vitamin B12, vitamin C, and vitamin E all contribute to a healthier brain, which can help to keep athletes more alert during training sessions and performances. It can also help anyone who wants to improve brain functions, memory, and alertness.

 

Beetroot Drives Higher Lactate Thresholds

While training more regularly and increasing interval training sessions can boost the lactate threshold (the point at which intense exercise causes lactate to rapidly increase) for athletes, increasing nitric oxide levels can also assist with increasing this threshold. Nitric oxide helps the body transport more oxygen to muscle tissues, which reduces lactic acid build-up and helping with performance during an event and post-event recovery. The muscle pain and recovery time associated with lactic acid build-up will have been shown to decline as a result of consuming beetroot juice more regularly.

 

Benefits of Beetroot for Improving Stamina

Beetroot for Improving Stamina

Stamina is essential for sports that require prolonged periods of exertion. In addition, stamina is needed for everyday activities and pushing through a long working day. Studies suggest that beetroot juice can boost stamina by decreasing time to exhaustion by 16%. The added benefit of improved recovery times helps with showing up for that next training, recovered and ready-to-go. Stamina is critical for endurance events, such as marathon running and long-distance cycling. A glass of beetroot juice daily can help to overcome any challenges regarding stamina and keep someone pushing forward during the most challenging conditions.

Within the health and sports world, beetroot benefits are widely known, but the same benefits can be had by anyone who drinks beetroot juice. is receiving more attention thanks to the many benefits of beetroot shared above. It’s easy to add beetroot to consume in juice form  Thanks to many studies and advancements in sports nutrition, we know that the main benefits of beetroot are its ability to increase in nitric oxide. For both sports and overall health nitric oxide drives healthy circulation, muscle performance, endurance, brain function, and helps us maintain higher levels of energy throughout our trainings and our entire day. 

 

 

References

Fernandes, T.L., Nunes, R. dos S.S., Abad, C.C.C., Silva, A.C.B., Souza, L.S., Silva, P.R.S., Albuquerque, C., Irigoyen, M.C., Hernandez, A.J., Fernandes, T.L., Nunes, R. dos S.S., Abad, C.C.C., Silva, A.C.B., Souza, L.S., Silva, P.R.S., Albuquerque, C., Irigoyen, M.C. and Hernandez, A.J. (2016). Post-analysis methods for lactate threshold depend on training intensity and aerobic capacity in runners. An experimental laboratory study. Sao Paulo Medical Journal, [online] 134(3), pp.193–198. Available at: http://www.scielo.br/scielo.php?script=sci_arttext&pid=S1516-31802016000300193.

Domínguez, R., Maté-Muñoz, J.L., Cuenca, E., García-Fernández, P., Mata-Ordoñez, F., Lozano-Estevan, M.C., Veiga-Herreros, P., da Silva, S.F. and Garnacho-Castaño, M.V. (2018). Effects of beetroot juice supplementation on intermittent high-intensity exercise efforts. Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, [online] 15(1). Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5756374/.

Domínguez, R., Cuenca, E., Maté-Muñoz, J., García-Fernández, P., Serra-Paya, N., Estevan, M., Herreros, P. and Garnacho-Castaño, M. (2017). Effects of Beetroot Juice Supplementation on Cardiorespiratory Endurance in Athletes. A Systematic Review. Nutrients, [online] 9(1), p.43. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5295087/

ScienceDaily. (n.d.). Beetroot Juice Boosts Stamina, New Study Shows. [online] Available at: https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/08/090806141520.htm.

Muggeridge, D.J., Howe, C.C.F., Spendiff, O., Pedlar, C., James, P.E. and Easton, C. (2014). A Single Dose of Beetroot Juice Enhances Cycling Performance in Simulated Altitude. Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, 46(1), pp.143–150.

Wylie, L.J., Kelly, J., Bailey, S.J., Blackwell, J.R., Skiba, P.F., Winyard, P.G., Jeukendrup, A.E., Vanhatalo, A. and Jones, A.M. (2013). Beetroot juice and exercise: pharmacodynamic and dose-response relationships. Journal of Applied Physiology, 115(3), pp.325–336.

Ferreira, L.F. and Behnke, B.J. (2011). A toast to health and performance! Beetroot juice lowers blood pressure and the O2 cost of exercise. Journal of Applied Physiology, 110(3), pp.585–586.

Thompson, C., Wylie, L.J., Fulford, J., Kelly, J., Black, M.I., McDonagh, S.T.J., Jeukendrup, A.E., Vanhatalo, A. and Jones, A.M. (2015). Dietary nitrate improves sprint performance and cognitive function during prolonged intermittent exercise. European Journal of Applied Physiology, 115(9), pp.1825–1834

 

 

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