What Is Nitric Oxide?
Nitric oxide —abbreviated as “NO” —is a gas. We make it naturally within our blood vessels. It plays a crucial role in the proper functioning of the body. Some of the things nitric oxide does include:
- lowers blood pressure
- improves erections
- helps cells communicate with each other
- helps the immune system function
While beets can boost nitric oxide levels, so too can exercise and eat green vegetables.
One teaspoon (about 5 grams) is the equivalent of 3 organic beets. In one in teaspoon there are the following ingredients:
The product website also states that SuperBeets contains:
- Non-GMO beetroot crystals
- Malic acid
- Stevia leaf extract
- Natural flavors (they don’t say what those flavors are)
The beets used in the product are organically grown. Also, all beets are grown in the US. The website also states that SuperBeets is made in a facility that processes soy, milk, eggs, nuts wheat. This is valuable information for people with allergies to these foods.
One of the pages at HumanN.com (formally Neogensis.com) did list some research studies. Here is a summary of the research I found (update: these studies are no longer found on the site):
A study that described how nitrates can alter gene expression.
Another investigation describing how nitric oxide may have hormone-like effects in mice. This study did not involve SuperBeets.
A review that discusses the potential benefits of eating plant sources of nitrates and nitrites. This paper does not discuss SuperBeets.
A paper describing the heart protection effects of nitrates in foods. This paper does not discuss SuperBeets.
There is also an interesting investigation showing people who took a nitric oxide supplement had a 72% reduction in triglycerides after taking the supplement for only 30 days. The supplement used is not SuperBeets but another supplement made by the same company called Neo40.
Another paper describes how 1 person who took the Neo40 supplement had lower blood pressure after taking the supplement for 9 months.
SuperBeets and Exercise
Beetroot juice is reputed to help boost exercise performance. There is research on this.
For example, This study noted beetroot juice improved kayak performance under laboratory conditions.
Another investigation found beetroot juice appeared to help exercise performance in swimmers.
Conversely, this clinical trial, showed beetroot juice did not help cycling ability or blood pressure in people with lung problems.
Beetroot juice is said to open up blood vessels to improve circulation. But, in this investigation, there was no vasodilation (opening up) of the brachial artery at rest or during exercise.
When researchers gave nitrate supplements to professional cyclists it didn't help them ride the bike any better.
Ironically this study found the opposite – beetroot juice did help cyclists perform better on the bike.
Who Makes SupeBeets?
The company is called HumanN (formally NeoGenis Labs). Their website is HumanN.com. The company address is 1120 S Capital of Texas Highway Building 1, Suite 210 Austin, TX 78746.
An older name, not used any longer appears to be NLogix Labs. The BBB gives HumanN an A rating.” See the BBB file for updates
Call the customer support number at 888-556-9747. Another contact number is 855-636-4040.
The product can also be ordered directly from their website.
How to Return SuperBeets
When buying from the HumanN website, SuperBeets has a 30-day money-back guarantee. The supplement must be returned in its original packaging. To Return SuperBeets call 1-888-898-5872 and obtain a Return Authorization Number (RMA number) first. This number must be written on the outside of the package to be returned. Customer service will give you the address to return the product and any other necessary instructions.
Terms And Conditions
If you look at the Terms and Conditions Page of HumanN, numbers 14 and 15 of the page describe how people waive certain rights when purchasing products from the website. This includes the inability to take part in class action lawsuits and going through binding arbitration. Many companies have similar stipulations as a way of protecting themselves. This makes sense to me. I wanted to point this out in case it matters to someone.
1 Does it improve energy
Does the supplement improve energy like caffeine? No this is unlikely.
2 Does it contain added sugar?
No. A teaspoon has 3 grams of naturally occurring sugar from beets. There are no added sugars.
3 Does SuperBeets have vitamin C?
Yes and quite a good amount. A teaspoon has 50 mg which is 83% of the RDA for vitamin C.
4 Will it turn my urine red?
It's possible Superbeets will make your urine look red, the same way juicing beets may. This is nothing to worry about.
5 Is SuperBeets bad for kidneys?
Beets are a source of oxalates, compounds that can cause kidney stones. There's no evidence Superbeets causes kidney stones. If you are at risk of kidney stones talk to your doctor.
6 Are beets organic?
7 SuperBeets and Neo 40: better together?
While the company says the supplements were designed to work synergistically with each other, there's no clinical evidence. The HumanN company cautions against using more than than 1 Neo40 tablet and 10g of SuperBeets within 24 hours.
My advice is to try one by itself first and see how you feel.
Can Beets Become Toxic?
Beets are a source of nitrates. Nitrates help us make nitric oxide. In medicine, there is a condition called nitrate tolerance. Basically, the nitrates stop working. The body gets used to them and they no longer improve nitric oxide levels. This can happen with drugs like nitroglycerin tablets used by people with heart disease.
So what about food? Can the nitrates in foods cause nitrate intolerance too? This is unlikely because the nitrates from food are inorganic (naturally occurring nitrates) while those used in medicine are organic (synthetic nitrates).
When in doubt, ask a dietitian or cardiologist.
Super Beets Side Effects
Superbeets are likely safe in most people. The supplement has been around for a number of years and no bad issues seem common. Here's a list of things to consider if you're not healthy. This list is not complete:
- Start with less than recommended for the first week
- Don't use more than 2 scoops (10 grams) per day
- SuperBeets is made in a facility that processes soy, milk, eggs, nuts wheat
- Beets may turn urine or bowel movements orange/red but this is harmless
- Hypertension? Ask your doctor. Nitric oxide can lower blood pressure
- Talk to your doctor if you take Viagra or other ED medication
- Stop taking beetroot juice supplements at least 2 weeks before having surgery
- If you have cancer talk to your doctor. Some evidence suggests nitric oxide may promote some forms of cancer.
SuperBeets vs. Beets
Can’t' you juice beets and get the same effect? It's possible. It's worth remembering some studies have used beetroot juice rather than beet juice supplements. In general, 4 oz of beetroot juice has about 300 mg of natural nitrates.
Does SuperBeets Work?
SuperBeets is an interesting supplement and some research appears to show it raises nitric oxide levels. Whether this means the supplement improves exercise performance or better overall health will need better studies.