Space & Treasure Coast Edition
Bookmark and Share Email this page Email Print this page Print Feed Feed

Beetroot Juice Helps Older Brains Act Younger

Positive Effects on the Mind

iMarzi/Shutterstock.com

Beets contain high levels of dietary nitrate, which can increase blood flow and improve exercise performance. Researchers from Wake Forest University, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, tested the impact of consuming beetroot juice prior to exercise on the somatomotor cortex, the part of the brain that processes information from the muscles.

Twenty-six older adults with hypertension that generally don’t exercise were split into two groups. Half were given a beetroot juice supplement with 560 milligrams of nitrate prior to a thrice-weekly, 50-minute treadmill walk for six weeks. The other half were given a placebo with very little nitrate. The beetroot juice group showed substantially higher levels of nitrate after exercising than the placebo group.

“We knew going in that a number of studies had shown that exercise has positive effects on the brain,” explains W. Jack Rejeski, director of the Behavioral Medicine Laboratory in the Health and Exercise Science Department at Wake Forest and study co-author. “We showed that compared to exercise alone, adding a beetroot juice supplement for hypertensive older adults to exercise resulted in brain connectivity that closely resembles what is seen in younger adults.”


This article appears in the September 2017 issue of Natural Awakenings.

Edit ModuleShow Tags

More from Natural Awakenings

Featured Local Yoga Practitioners

Featured Local Yoga Practitioners

YOGA 10 Health Benefits for Mind, Body, and Soul

Weight loss, muscle tone, reduced stress, and increased energy are some of the benefits that many people enjoy through the simple and natural practice of yoga.

Activate Fat Burning Hormones

Losing weight is a billion-dollar industry and is on the top of everyone’s list of goals.

Fat-Storing to Fat-Burning

If you have struggled with your weight, your problem may be something you never would have imagined. It could be your weight problem isn’t the real problem – it’s just a symptom of your body’s imbalance.

Natural Support for Our Aging Pets

Just as we humans age, our pets inevitably will go through the same process and develop certain conditions as they age. Common health problems in aging pets are: heart disease, liver disease, kidney disease, diabetes, cancer, thyroid disease, arthritis, cataracts, weight problems, cognitive disorders and urinary conditions.

Add your comment: