Some people prefer to use natural ingredients instead of synthetic pre workouts for lifting. Among the natural ingredients commonly used, beets are one of the best.
Beets are a nutrient-dense vegetable that contain a variety of vitamins, minerals, and nitrates which make them optimal to take for workouts, health, cognitive function, blood pressure, and improved vascularity.
To get these benefits from beets, it is best to take them in the form of powder extract since that will reduce cost, and minimize the overall amount that you have to eat.
Just eating beets will give you these benefits as well but many people opt for the powder extract version of beetroot for convenience and cost.
Benefits of Taking Beetroot
The main benefits of taking beetroot powder are improved strength during workouts, better pumps, more vascularity, lower blood pressure, reduced inflammation, increased energy levels, better immune system, and possible increased production of sex hormones.
These are all the benefits that beetroot can provide. The common uses of beetroot are as a pre workout supplement, as a libido booster, for general health, to lessen ED, and to build muscle.
Beetroot is often used as a pre workout supplement due to its ability to increase nitric oxide as well as the effect it has on hormones like testosterone.
Beetroot increases nitric oxide because it contains nitrates which are made into nitric oxide.
Beetroot is also able to boost the production of sex hormones, such as testosterone, because it contains the mineral boron. Boron plays a significant role in the body’s production of testosterone and was found in this study to significantly increase testosterone and decrease estrogen in 20 males after 1 week.
Beetroot also contains beta-carotene which is an amino acid that has antioxidant effects and may help maintain muscle mass. The positive effects of beta-carotene on muscle mass have been backed up by this study and this one.
How Beetroot Increases Nitric Oxide
Beetroot is able to increase the amount of nitric oxide in your blood since it contains nitrates. Higher levels of nitric oxide result in enhanced circulation and improved delivery of oxygen, amino acids, and nutrients to the muscles. This study found that nitrates are able to be recycled to form nitric oxide even after being used. Beets have one of the highest concentrations of nitrates of all foods.
Nitrates are vasodilators that increase overall levels of nitric oxide, reduce blood pressure, and may make the mitochondria of cells more efficient. This study found that nitrates reduce muscle fatigue. This study also found that nitrates reduce muscle fatigue as well as improving performance during training.
Nitrates boost performance and strength since they allow the body to use oxygen more efficiently. During a workout, if your body can deliver oxygen and nutrients to muscles better they will be able to exert more force, recover faster in between sets, and work longer. The pump will also be better since more blood is going to them.
Best Time To Take Beetroot
The best time to take beetroot is 1-2 hours before a workout. You could also take another dose of beetroot 1-2 hours after a workout as well.
It is best to take beetroot 1-2 hours before a workout in order to digest the beetroot fully. For the benefits in training, beetroot should be used as a pre workout supplement because you will gain the benefits of a nitric oxide increase which will improve your pumps, strength, endurance during lifting, and quality of your workout.
How Much Beetroot Should You Take?
The best dose of beetroot extract powder is 3-6 grams. The optimal way to to take beetroot powder is to have 3-5 grams 1-2 hours before you workout then 1-2 grams after.
There are no adverse side effects associated with consuming more than 6 grams of beetroot. Strictly for muscle building and strength however, over 6-8 grams is not necessary to take at once.
The general side effects of beetroot may be nausea and indigestion but using the powder form of beetroot will allow you to mostly avoid these side effects.
If the benefits on blood pressure are the sole interest, it is best to take beetroot is small doses throughout the day. For the benefits on training it is best to take beetroot before a workout.
Best Bestroot Supplement
If you are interested in purchasing beet root extract or just simply beetroot powder the best way to buy them is in bulk from pure sources. Bulk Supplements supplies both beetroot powder and beetroot extract for inexpensive prices.
They offer 500g of pure beetroot powder as well as 100g of beet root extract. Both of these supplements will supply the vitamins, minerals, and nitrates in beetroot that make its beneficial but overall the beetroot powder is more optimal because it will contain a wider range of compounds.
Both of these supplements contain enough beetroot to last at least 3 months of frequent use. They also have other amounts offered in addition to these but these are going to be the best value.
Overall, beetroot is beneficial for lifting for a variety of reasons. The benefits of taking a beetroot supplement are reduced blood pressure, more energy, better pumps when lifting, less muscle fatigue, more strength, higher libido, more vascularity, reduced inflammation, and possibly an increase in testosterone.
It is best to take beetroot 1-2 hours before lifting for a better workout. The best dose before a workout is around 3-6 grams. For the benefits on blood pressure and health, it is best to take beetroot several times a day in smaller doses such as 1-2 grams.
For more on supplements such as ashwagandha and pine bark extract, click here.