Nutrition Tips For Alzheimer’s Disease
What is Alzheimer and It’s Common Symptoms?
Alzheimer’s disease is a long-term illness that affects the brain and causes it to deteriorate. It is a form of dementia that affects persons over 65 years old. Genetics, age, and family history are all factors that contribute to Alzheimer’s disease. Cognitive training exercises, antioxidant consumption, being socially active, regular exercise, and quitting smoking are all recommended preventive strategies. Aside from that, keeping a healthy lifestyle and enhancing balanced nutrition intake should be key goals. The signs of Alzheimer’s disease appear gradually over time, causing the brain to degrade. The following are the most common Alzheimer’s disease symptoms:
- Memory loss
- A reduction in problem-solving abilities
- Inability to perform simple, routine tasks
- Mood and personality shifts
- A decrease in personal hygiene
- Troubled writing and speech
Importance of Nutrition in Alzheimer Disease
Proper nutrition is an essential part of having a healthy life, especially as we become older. However, excellent nutrition is even more crucial for those with Alzheimer’s disease and dementia, as evidence shows that eating a nutritious diet can enhance emotions of well-being and even symptoms. On the other hand, inadequate nutrition appears to be linked to quicker cognitive decline, worsening behavioural symptoms, rapid weight loss, and a lower quality of life in these people.
Unfortunately, persons suffering from the mental and physical impairments associated with dementia-related illnesses may find it extremely challenging to maintain healthy eating habits. There is no as such particular diet for those with Alzheimer’s disease, but healthy nutrition can help them feel better. It is crucial to maintain proper nourishment to keep the body strong and healthy. Poor nutrition can increase behavioural symptoms and lead to weight loss in people with Alzheimer’s or dementia.
Reasons For Not Eating Enough by Alzheimer’s Patient
- Missing socialization: Eating a meal is often used as a social gathering. People gather around a table to talk, laugh, and eat and drink delicious food. Lonely seniors may not be hungry and leave food on their plates.
- Too many items on the plate: Having a full plate can be overwhelming for someone with Alzheimer’s or dementia. It can be tough task for them to know where to begin eating. In this situation, serve the food in courses to make things easy for the senior. Start with the salad, then serve some mashed potatoes and gravy, followed by a few slices of beef.
- Cutlery confusion: Seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia may prefer to consume soup with a fork rather than a spoon. They can also choose to eat with their hands instead of using silverware. Adaptive cutlery (angled or weighted forks, knives, and spoons) can make eating easier for seniors with limited physical mobility.
- Filling up on dessert: Before serving dessert, clear the plates. Seniors with Alzheimer’s or dementia may behave like a tiny children, rushing to the dessert table before finishing the meal.
Tips To Improve The Eating Habit of Alzheimer Patients
- Drink water: Seniors who drink plenty of water can avoid constipation and urinary tract infections (UTIs). Seniors should drink between 1 and 12 ounces of water per pound of body weight each day.
- Serve multiple meals a day: Serve a variety of meals throughout the day. Late-stage Alzheimer’s and dementia patients may have trouble recalling their most recent meal. Eating regularly and consistently can help seniors control hunger, meet their daily nutritional requirements, and maintain a healthy energy level.
- Schedule regular dental checkups: Dentures that are loose or have been damaged might be an issue. Maintain a regular dental schedule. If your parents cannot describe an oral problem to a dentist, you may be required to step in and explain the situation.
- Focus on nutrition first: A brain-healthy lifestyle begins with a nutritious, well-balanced diet. To help a senior who is constipated, provide fresh fruit or whole wheat bread on the menu.
- Limit coffee and teas: Coffee and tea with caffeine work as diuretics, causing dehydration. Encourage your loved one to drink these beverages in moderation and to drink water afterwards.
- Make eating a social event: Engage in conversation and enjoy each other’s company. Sit and eat with your partner to keep an eye on the amount and sorts of food.
Focus On Healthy Eating
- Maintain Balance and Variety: Throughout the week, serve a variety of vegetables, whole-grain goods, lean proteins, and low-fat dairy products.
- Limit Saturated Fats and Cholesterol-Rich Foods: Keep in mind that not all fats are made equal. Avoid fatty cuts of meat and limit your use of solid fats like butter. Instead, go for lean proteins like chicken and fish and olive oil and other heart-healthy fats like avocado.
- Cut Down on Refined Sugar: Reduce your refined sugar intake by opting for healthier alternatives like fruit or juice-sweetened baked products. However, remain flexible, as a small amount of sugar may encourage eating in the middle or late stages of Alzheimer’s disease when a lack of appetite can be a concern.
- Limit high-sodium foods and reduce salt intake: Experiment with other seasonings and herbs to provide taste without adding salt.
- Keep Hydrated: Throughout the day, offer small cups of water or other liquids, as well as fruits, soups, smoothies, and other items high in water.