Battling Alzheimer’s disease – Part 4: Beets are a good bet

Fend off those “senior moments”

Vinny’s grandparents have told him that living with Alzheimer’s disease or dementia is one of the scarier prospects of growing older. So he has done a series of posts about some lifestyle choices that could make a positive difference to our mental health in later years. He’s all for starting these habits early, for a longer and more active life. Read on for his forth and final installment.

Super beets: Beets are the ideal brain food. These ones are large enough to use as weights in your exercise class. But for best effect, we suggest you eat them.

Part 4 – Beets are a good bet

Beets may be our best defence against Alzheimer’s disease

You might be surprised to know that beets are one of the healthiest vegetables you can eat. Their bright red color signals a wealth of antioxidants, which are potent fighters of inflammation in the body and, specifically, in the brain.

But beets offer the brain even more useful benefits. Betanin, the compound that accounts for the red hue of beets, disables a protein that contributes to Alzheimer’s disease. It is so effective that researchers are looking into betanin as a possible drug component for sufferers of this serious brain disorder.

Beets help keep the brain healthy in other ways, too. The rich red root contains nitrite, which when converted to nitric oxide, increases blood flow. More blood flowing into the brain means more oxygen, which increases the brain’s efficiency.

Beets help you go on… and ON!

Eating beets simply

If beets are not already a regular part of your diet, try boiling them until they are soft to the fork. Once they’ve cooled down enough to touch, slip the skins off, and serve them sliced. Season with salt and pepper and a little lemon juice or even some light sour cream or Greek yogurt.

If you prefer a quicker fix, try canned beets, pickled beets, or grated raw beets. Use them on salads or in soups. Or try pureeing some pickled beets to mix into a nice chickpea hummus for a delicious, super-nutritious dip.

If you don’t have low blood pressure and are not on blood thinners or suffering from kidney stones, you can try making or buying beet juice for a daily boost. Check with your doctor for details on the health angle.

Beets are good for what ails you

Traditional recipes featuring beets and some novel uses

Over the years, Vinny has posted many many ways to use beets. Here are a few links to some great-tasting beet recipes.

People are living longer these days. It’s worth a little effort to protect our brains from damage as we age. Exercise and proper nutrition can help stave off brain diseases that confuse our thinking and delete our memories of the people and places we love.

References

  1. Betaine’s effect on the brain: Leiteritz, A., Dilberger, B., Wenzel, U. et al. Betaine reduces ß-amyloid-induced paralysis through activation of cystathionine-ß-synthase in an Alzheimer model of Caenorhabditis elegans. Genes Nutr 13, 21 (2018).
  2. Read the first three installments of Vinny’s series on Battling Alzheimer’s disease:

Gramma? Eat beets!

1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Tony
    Feb 16, 2021 @ 12:55:41

    Vinny – Great series. I have had Alzheimer’s on both sides, my father’s father and my mother and her sister. This post might be of value-https://guysandgoodhealth.com/important-facts-about-your-brain/

    Reply

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