These findings emerged from a small study at Wake Forest University in which researchers found that drinking 16 ounces of beet juice, which increases the nitrate, plus some high nitrate foods, causing increased blood flow to part of the brain often associated with changes that cause dementia.
With age, this region becomes less perfusion (blood does not flow as freely as there is in young people), the scientists say.
Other foods high nitrate that can increase blood flow to the main types of brain areas including oatmeal, cabbage and other green leafy vegetables like spinach and some lettuce.
Only 14 adults aged 70 and older participated from the study.
After consuming high nitrate breakfast participants underwent an MRI, which showed an increase in blood flow to the white matter of the frontal lobes.
Results of the study were published online in Nitric Oxide: Biology and Chemistry, a peer-reviewed journal of the Nitric Oxide Society.