Root vegetables are probably the least eaten food group in our society.
Carrots, parsnips, yams, sweet potatoes, rutabagas, turnips, radishes, pumpkin and squash, beets and all of the onion family are in this group with slight variations in their effects.
These vegetables have a sweet flavor when cooked that support the spleen, pancreas and stomach. They are anti-inflammatory and absorb excess acid in the blood. This makes them a huge asset in alkalizing the body and helping us feel centered. They are helpful in regulating hormones and moistening the intestines, and in supporting the spleen are strengthening to the skin surface.
The onion family, turnips and radishes have a pungent flavor. When eaten raw they support the lungs and remove heavy metals and parasites from the body and also clean the arteries. Beets have the specific benefit of clearing liver stagnation and strengthening the heart.
A note: Beet greens have a lot of oxalic acid. When eaten in abundance this acid inhibits calcium absorption. Raw onion, radish and turnip should be grated or minced and not eaten in large quantities as they can create excess gas and chest pain.
Enjoy your roots in all the imaginative ways you can think of. Their calming effects are especially good for children, who so often eat refined foods.