Eating the occasional treat isn’t going to give anyone Alzheimer’s, but there are a few foods that have been closely tied to this disease. Steering clear of those foods can greatly reduce a senior’s risk of developing Alzheimer’s and many other cognitive disorders. Here’s a quick glimpse of six common foods and beverages older adults should try to avoid.
A number of studies have revealed that having a few glasses of red wine every week can actually boost brain health, but seniors need to be very careful about how much alcohol they consume. Prolonged alcohol abuse can damage the brain and greatly increase the risk of Alzheimer’s. Heavy drinking can even cause a type of dementia known as Korsakoff syndrome.
Even though some forms of oil (such as olive oil) are good for the cardiovascular system, older adults should avoid most deep-fried foods. The additives and artificial flavors could damage the synapses within the brain and eventually lead to the formation of plaques, which are created when proteins clump together. These plaques collect between neurons and disrupt cell function. Studies have shown that plaques in the brain are a major risk factor for Alzheimer’s, and any foods that cause these pockets of protein need to be eaten in moderation.
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Packaged Baked Goods
The vast majority of packaged baked goods are filled with trans fats, which have been linked to volume loss in the brain, damaged brain cells, memory loss, and a wide variety of other cognitive problems. If your loved one wants a sweet treat, try baking at home, where you have full control over which ingredients are used.
A 2018 study carried out at Weill Cornell Medicine found that a high-salt diet can increase the risk of Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. Putting a little salt in foods shouldn’t impact the brain, but seniors need to steer clear of extremely salty snacks, such as chips and french fries.
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 in-home care. Huntsville, AL, 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.
When it comes to cognitive health, very few foods or beverages are as damaging as soda. The occasional soda shouldn’t be a major problem, but this sugar-filled drink needs to be considered a treat. Regularly consuming soda can negatively impact the cardiovascular system and the brain. Some experts believe sugar-free soda might be very detrimental to cognitive health as well.
Fish with High Mercury Content
Most fatty fish is incredibly healthy, but seniors need to be wary of which type of fish they eat. When seniors eat fish that contains mercury, the element eventually makes its way to the brain and increases the risk of Alzheimer’s. To reduce the amount of mercury your loved one consumes, you might want to limit his or her intake of Chilean sea bass, Spanish mackerel, halibut, grouper, and black cod.
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, Huntsville 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 friendly Care Managers today at (256) 716-9940 to learn more about our customized care plans.