Acta Biologica Hungarica

, Volume 58, Issue 3, pp 281–286 | Cite as

Extreme Consumption of Beta vulgaris var. rubra Can Cause Metal Ion Accumulation in the Liver

  • Anna BlázovicsEmail author
  • Éva Sárdi
  • Klára Szentmihályi
  • L. Váli
  • Mária Takács-Hájos
  • Éva Stefanovits-Bányai


Redox homeostasis can be considered as the cumulative action of all free radical reactions and antioxidant defences in different tissues, which provide suitable conditions for life. Transition metal ions are ubiquitous in biological systems. Beta vulgaris var. rubra (table beet root) contains several bioactive agents (e.g. betain, betanin, vulgaxanthine, polyphenols, folic acid) and different metal elements (e.g. Al, B, Ba, Ca, Cu, Fe, K, Mg, Mn, Na, Zn), which act on the various physiological routes. Therefore we studied the effect of this metal rich vegetable on element content of the liver in healthy rats. Male Wistar rats (n = 7) (200 ± 20 g) were treated with lyophilised powder of table beet root (2 g/kg b.w.) added into the rat chow for 10 days. Five healthy animals served as control. We found significant accumulation of Cu, Fe, Mg, Mn, Zn and P in the liver, which was proved by ICP-AES measurements. We suppose that the extreme consumption of table beet root can cause several disturbances not only in cases of healthy patients but, e.g. in patients suffering with metal accumulating diseases, e.g. porphyria cutanea tarda, haemochromatosis or Wilson disease-although moderate consumption may be beneficial in iron-deficiency anaemia and inflammatory bowel diseases.


Beta vulgaris var. rubra element accumulation redox homeostasis 


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The study was supported by ETT 002/2003, NKFP 1B/047/2004 and NKFP 1A/005/2004 projects. The authors wish to thank Edina Pintér and Sarolta Bárkovits for their excellent technical assistance.


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© Akadémiai Kiadó, Budapest 2007

This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made.

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anna Blázovics
    • 1
    Email author
  • Éva Sárdi
    • 2
  • Klára Szentmihályi
    • 3
  • L. Váli
    • 1
  • Mária Takács-Hájos
    • 4
  • Éva Stefanovits-Bányai
    • 5
  1. 1.2nd Department of MedicineSemmelweis UniversityBudapestHungary
  2. 2.Department of Genetic and Horticultural Breeding, Faculty of Horticultural ScienceCorvinus University of BudapestBudapestHungary
  3. 3.Chemical Research CenterHungarian Academy of SciencesBudapestHungary
  4. 4.Department of Horticulture, Faculty of Agricultural Water and Environment ManagementTessedik S. CollegeSzarvasHungary
  5. 5.Department of Applied Chemistry, Faculty of Food ScienceCorvinus University of BudapestBudapestHungary

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