Transcript: Pretty in Pee-nk
Beeturia, pink pee after beet consumption, is totally harmless—you’re just peeing out some of the pigment. But it can be used to remind us of an important fact. When we eat plant foods, many of these wonderful antioxidant pigments—lycopene, beta carotene—the phytonutrients are actually absorbed into our bloodstream, and bathe the organs, tissues, and cells of our bodies.
There’s no direct connection between our gut and our bladder, right? The only way those beet pigments are finding their way into our urine is by being absorbed through our gut, into our bloodstream, and circulating throughout our entire body, before being eventually filtered out by the kidneys. Our blood for a time is a little pinker too!
When we have garlic breath, it’s not just garlic residue in our mouths. It’s the fact that those wonderful health-promoting garlic compounds got absorbed into our bloodstream, and are actually being excreted straight out of our lungs. If we just had a garlic enema, we’d still get garlic breath.
So when you see studies investigating the antibacterial effects of garlic, and you’re thinking who cares what garlic does in a petri dish,outside the body, that’s why we care—because it does circulate throughout our body. That’s why garlic has been found useful as an adjunct treatment for pneumonia in critical cases. It’s excreted by our lungs to get that garlic breath, and can wipe out bacteria on the way out.
Other than pink pee and red stools, which gives a whole new meaning to the term toilet bowl flushing, any other side-effects to beet consumption? One more.
Should you get run over while you’re out biking on beets, on autopsy, you might amuse your pathologist. “The case of the purple colon: Purple discoloration of the large bowel related to… beetroot ingestion…”
To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by MaryAnn Allison.
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