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Healthiest Foods for Older Adults with Alzheimer’s

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The dietary concerns of seniors with Alzheimer’s are challenging for a number of reasons. As their memory lapses, seniors may forget to eat, which leads to malnutrition and dehydration. Their senses of smell and taste are altered secondary to the changes occurring in the brain. Thus, the foods or meals that once provided pleasure might now seem unpleasant. As the disorder progresses, your older loved one may have difficulty swallowing. For these reasons, you should prioritize the types of foods to include in daily meals to ensure optimal health.

Leafy Greens

Arugula, collard, and mustard greens along with kale and spinach are rich in iron, B vitamins, vitamin E, and calcium. The B vitamins are necessary for neurological function. The nutrients are also known to elevate mood by promoting the production and release of serotonin. Calcium is vital for bone and cardiovascular health. The fiber the vegetables contain also benefits the gastrointestinal system. Greens are easily incorporated into salads and smoothies or prepared as a side dish. Six or more servings per week are recommended.

Beans

Beans are a nutrient-dense source of protein, iron, magnesium, potassium, and a B vitamin known as choline. Choline boosts the function of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is vital for cognitive function. Beans may be enjoyed as a side dish or in soups, stews, and Tex-Mex dishes. Strive to serve your loved one three meals a week that contain beans. 

Aging adults who need help preparing nutritious meals can benefit from the assistance of highly trained professional caregivers. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional home care. Rocklin, CA, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.

Berries

Berries contain a phytochemical compound known as anthocyanin, which gives the fruits their bright, rich color. The compound also protects neurons from the damage caused by inflammation and free radicals that contribute to cell death. Berries are a good source of fiber and vitamins C and E. The fruits are an ideal snack when seniors are craving something sweet. They’re also commonly mixed into cereals or smoothies. Try including berries as part of your loved one’s daily intake at least twice a week.

Fish

Salmon, tuna, mackerel, and similar oily fish provide much-needed omega-3 fatty acids, which protect neurons by interfering with the physiological processes that cause Alzheimer’s. Fish is also a recommended source of protein. Seniors aged 65 and older are advised to have fish at least three times each week to reap the benefits. Instead of using vegetable oils when cooking, you should use olive oil, which is also a good source of omega-3 fatty acids. 

There are many reasons seniors might need assistance at home. Some may require regular mental stimulation due to an Alzheimer’s diagnosis, while others might only need part-time assistance with exercise and basic household tasks. Home Care Assistance is a leading at-home care provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life.

Poultry

Chicken and turkey are lean protein sources when consumed without the skin. Compared to beef, poultry is higher in complex B vitamins and contains fewer calories. The meat is also a good source of phosphorus and potassium. Chicken and turkey easily replace beef in many different recipes. Opt for serving chicken two or more times a week.

Whole Grains

Whole grains in cereals, salads, main dishes, and baked goods provide an added source of protein along with fiber, B vitamins, iron, magnesium, manganese, and zinc. Grains also contain a number of different antioxidant compounds that reduce inflammation and prevent free radical damage.

If you’re the primary caregiver for a loved one with Alzheimer’s disease, you don’t have to go through it alone. Without the right assistance, Alzheimer’s can be challenging for seniors and their families to manage. If you’re looking for professional Alzheimer’s care, Rocklin Home Care Assistance provides high-quality care aging adults and their families can count on. All of our hourly and live-in caregivers are trained to help seniors with Alzheimer’s live happier and healthier lives, and we also provide specialized dementia, stroke, and Parkinson’s care. Call one of our dedicated Care Managers today at 916.226.3737 to learn about the high quality of our in-home care services.