Beetroot Allergy Test
Latin name: Beta vulgaris craca
Source material: Fresh root
Common names: Beetroot, Beets, Garden beets, Table beets
Beetroot is a food which may result in allergy symptoms in sensitised individuals.
Beetroot Allergy Test: Allergen Exposure
Originating in Europe, Asia and the East Indies, beetroot is now cultivated globally for both human and animal consumption. Beetroot is grown primarily for the enlarged bulbous root, which forms near or just above the soil surface. Colours range from the familiar bright red to white or striped.
Beetroot is available fresh or canned, and can be eaten raw or cooked. It is traditionally boiled until tender, then pickled in vinegar and used in salads, but it can also be baked, steamed, roasted or microwaved. Pickled beets are a traditional food in many countries.
The leaves can be eaten raw or cooked like spinach. Wine has been made from beetroot, and the juice has also been used to fortify the colour of grape wine. Beetroot has one of highest sugar contents among vegetables.
It is an excellent source of vitamins and minerals, with particularly high amounts of folate and manganese.
In the United States, the Pennsylvania Dutch people have traditionally prepared pickled beetroot eggs, whereby hard-boiled eggs are refrigerated in the liquid left over from pickling beets and allowed to marinate until the eggs turn a deep pink-red colour.
Beetroot contains betacyanin pigment (betaine), which is commercially extracted to make the colourant beetroot red. The root of this and other red-rooted forms contains betanin, an anthocyanin similar to those found in red wine, which is partly responsible for red beets’ immune-enhancing effect. This is one reason for use of the root as a herbal remedy.
Since the Middle Ages beetroot was used as a treatment for a variety of conditions, especially illnesses relating to digestion and the blood.
Beetroot juice has also been shown in preliminary studies to positively affect blood pressure in hypertensive people. Additionally there is some evidence that dietary nitrate supplements originating from beetroot or other vegetables can cause some improvement in endurance exercise performance.
Beetroot Allergy Test: Allergen Description
No allergens present in beetroot have yet been characterised.
Beetroot Allergy Test: Potential Cross-Reactivity
An extensive cross-reactivity among the different individual species of the genus could be expected, as well as to a certain degree among members of the family Chenopodiaceae.
Beetroot Allergy Test: Clinical Experience
Anecdotal evidence suggests that Beetroot can occasionally induce symptoms of food allergy in sensitised individuals; however, no studies have been reported to date.
Beetroot is known to produce red urine in some people following its ingestion, whereas others appear to be able to eat the vegetable without this effect. Beeturia is the excretion of red Beetroot pigment (betalaine) in urine and faeces. It occurs in about 14% of humans.
Betalaine is a redox indicator whose colour is protected by reducing agents. Thus, beeturia results from colonic absorption of betalaine: oxalic acid preserves the red colour through to the colon; otherwise, in non-beeturic individuals, betalaine is decolourised by non-enzymatic processes in the stomach and colon.
Beetroot has one of the highest nitrate contents found in vegetables and is also high in oxalate.