Beet (Beta vulgaris) is a flowering plant. Beet root and beet leaves are eaten as a vegetable and also used as medicine.

Beet contains chemicals that might reduce swelling and cholesterol. Beet can also increase levels of a chemical called nitric oxide in the body. Nitric oxide can affect blood vessels, possibly reducing blood pressure and making it easier to exercise.

People use beet most often for athletic performance and for reducing muscle soreness after exercise. It is also used for liver diseases, high blood pressure, and other conditions, but there is no good scientific evidence to support these other uses.
When taken by mouth: Beet is commonly consumed in foods. Beet and beetroot juice are possibly safe for most people when taken in larger amounts, short-term.

Beet can make urine or stools appear pink or red. But this is not harmful. There is concern that large doses of beet might cause low calcium levels and kidney damage. But this hasn't been shown to happen.

Special Precautions & Warnings:

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There isn't enough reliable information to know if beet is safe to use as a medicine when pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and stick to food amounts.

Kidney disease: Eating too many beets might make kidney disease worse.


NatMed Pro rates effectiveness based on scientific evidence according to the following scale: Effective, Likely Effective, Possibly Effective, Possibly Ineffective, Likely Ineffective, Ineffective, and Insufficient Evidence to Rate.
Likely effective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly effective Effectiveness definitions
  • Athletic performance. Drinking beetroot juice might improve exercise performance during aerobic activities in some people. But it's not clear how much beetroot juice is needed to see any benefit. And any benefit in elite athletes might be very small.
  • Muscle soreness caused by exercise. Drinking beetroot juice a few times a day for about 48 hours after exercise might reduce muscle soreness after sprinting or jumping.
Likely ineffective Effectiveness definitions
Possibly ineffective Effectiveness definitions
  • A lung disease that makes it harder to breathe (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or COPD). Drinking beetroot juice does not seem to improve the ability to exercise in people with COPD.
There is interest in using beet for a number of other purposes, but there isn't enough reliable information to say whether it might be helpful.
Insufficient evidence Effectiveness definitions

Dosing & administration

Beet root and beet leaves are commonly eaten as food. As medicine, beetroot juice has most often been used by adults in doses of 70-140 mL by mouth daily for 21 days. Beet is also available in many other forms, including beetroot extract, beetroot powder, beetroot gel, freeze-dried beet leaf, and baked beetroot. Speak with a healthcare provider to find out what type of product and dose might be best for a specific condition.

Interactions with pharmaceuticals

It is not known if Beet interacts with any medicines. Before taking Beet, talk with your healthcare professional if you take any medications.

Interactions with herbs & supplements

There are no known interactions with herbs and supplements.

Interactions with foods

There are no known interactions with foods.
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