For decades, the cause of Alzheimer’s has been a mystery. The disease, which affects brain function and memory retention, is an epidemic, with over 5.4 million Americans living with Alzheimer’s. With one in every eight adults over 65 years old diagnosed, it can seem inevitable that someone we know and love will develop Alzheimer’s. However, recent studies show that the inevitability of Alzheimer’s can be significantly reduced by leading a healthy lifestyle and eating well. As a top provider of senior home care in Bloomfield, we strive to put forward the best information for you and your elderly loved one. Here, we offer an abridged list of the best foods to eat, and a few to avoid, to help prevent Alzheimer’s.
One of the best preventative measures seniors can take with their diet is limiting sugar intake to no than 25 grams per day. Sugar can prohibit the absorption of magnesium, which is key in avoiding Alzheimer’s. Steer clear of processed foods with added sugar and limit sweet treats. Most of your loved one’s sugar consumption should come from the naturally occurring sugar in foods like fruit and dairy.
Trans Fat and (Most) Saturated Fat
Keep intake of these fats, often found in fried food, snack pastries, crackers, chips, and certain oils, to a minimum. Research has found even moderate intake of these fats can double or triple the risk of developing Alzheimer’s. Take an extra second at the grocery store to read labels, and avoid anything with “hydrogenated” in it. If you don’t have time to help your loved one do grocery shopping, find a part-time caregiver in Bloomfield who can assist him or her at the store. It should be noted that some saturated fats, like the kind found in nuts, is actually healthy, but should be consumed in moderation.
Vitamins, Antioxidants, and Folate
Getting a sufficient amount of B12, vitamin D, antioxidants and folate also helps stave off Alzheimer’s. Red meats are a great source of B12, while folate can be found in raw, leafy, green vegetables, and leafy greens are also high in magnesium. Blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries are all rich with antioxidants, which aid in battling neurological diseases. Vitamin D, a natural anti-inflammatory, can be absorbed through limited sun exposure or a supplement.
Study after study has shown consuming high-quality animal omega-3 fats like krill oil or fermented cod liver oil are key to warding off Alzheimer’s. It is best to get these through mercury-free fish, like salmon or rainbow trout, or by taking a daily supplement. These healthy fats slow down the progression of cell damage.
Proper nutrition can drastically reduce the chance of developing Alzheimer’s in old age. Make sure your loved one is eating a healthy diet filled with foods that help prevent Alzheimer’s. To learn more about hourly and live-in care services available in your area, or to inquire about our high-trained Alzheimer’s caregivers in Bloomfield, call Home Care Assistance at (248) 283-0835.