(Reuters File Photo)
Lots of athletes eat beets as they know research has suggested that nitrates boost endurance performance. In one study, cyclists who drank beet juice could pedal hard 15% longer in a time trial to exhaustion.
It takes about three to five beets (depending on their size, which varies widely) to get a performance boost, says study author Andy Jones, PhD, dean of research in the College of Life and Environmental Sciences, University of Exeter. “Peak nitrate levels occur two to three hours after you eat or drink them,” he says.