How to Plan Nutritious Meals for a Parent Who Has Alzheimer’s

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Seniors with Alzheimer’s may not remember to eat, and at times they may not seem to have much of an appetite. However, the right diet provides a combination of nutrients that can enhance brain health and inhibit further neuronal damage. The MIND and DASH diets include a selection of specific foods proven to benefit the brain. These diets offer a wide choice of food groups to create delicious and healthy meals.

Dark Leafy Greens – 6 Servings per Week 

Arugula, collard, kale, mustard greens, and spinach contain vitamin B9, which seems to increase cognition and memory in seniors. Vitamin B9 also prevents depression. Dark greens contain vitamin E, which protects brain tissue from inflammation and oxidative stress, issues that are commonly seen in seniors with Alzheimer’s.

Aging adults who need help managing mental and physical health issues 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. 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.

Cruciferous & Other Vegetables – One Serving Daily 

Bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cabbage, and cauliflower contain vitamin B9 along with carotenoids. These compounds are known to lower the levels of the amino acid homocysteine, which has been associated with cognitive decline. Carrots, tomatoes, and other bright-colored vegetables also offer an abundance of nutrients.

Beans – 3 Servings per Week

Legumes are a wonderful source of iron, magnesium, and potassium in addition to vitamin B9 and choline. Choline boosts levels of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which is necessary for proper brain function.

Berries & Cherries – 2 or More Servings per Week 

Red, blue, and purple fruits contain anthocyanin. This phytochemical compound protects delicate brain tissue from inflammation, oxidative stress, and radiation damage. Blueberries, cherries, raspberries, and strawberries are also a great source of fiber along with vitamins C and E.

If you need help planning and preparing healthy meals for your loved one, a professional caregiver can be a great source of support. 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 Tucson in-home care provider. Families rely on our expertly trained caregivers to help their senior loved ones maintain a high quality of life.

Fish – 2 to 3 Servings per Week 

Herring, salmon, and sardines belong to the oily fish category. Oily fish is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which keep the brain in optimal working condition. These nutrients also inhibit brain lesion development.

Nuts – 5 Times per Week 

Choose from almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, peanuts, pecans, and walnuts. Each small handful of nuts provides omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids as well as vitamins B6, B9, E, and magnesium. These compounds inhibit memory loss while acting as mood enhancers. Flax, pumpkin, and sunflower seeds are other alternatives that provide similar nutrients.

Whole Grains – 3 or More Servings Daily 

Brown rice, oatmeal, wheat germ, and whole-grain breads are high in fiber and provide vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids, which are essential for cardiovascular health. By increasing blood circulation, the brain has a better chance of receiving the nutrients it needs to function properly.

Curcumin Supplements 

The curcumin in the common spice turmeric has been shown to interfere with the accumulation of beta-amyloid, and it also destroys existing plaques. Additionally, the compound turmerone encourages new neuron development while enhancing memory. However, unless these are consumed daily in abundance, seniors with Alzheimer’s receive little benefit. Researchers recommend taking one to three grams of pure curcumin extract in three divided doses each day. 

Without the right assistance, Alzheimer’s can be challenging for seniors and their families to handle. If you’re looking for professional Alzheimer’s care, Tucson 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 us at (520) 276-6555 to create a customized in-home care plan.


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