May 7, 2018 by Stephanie Howe - Owner, Comfort Keepers
Memory Preservation: Seniors and Brain-Boosting Foods
Age-related memory loss is a fearsome prospect, but fortunately, there are many foods rich in various nutrients, that have proven to stand solidly in the battle to preserve healthy brain function in all people, especially seniors.
Brains are complex organs, responsible for sensation, as well as intellectual and nervous activity. We rely on our cognitive function in nearly every move we make, whether consciously or subconsciously, and like the heart, which is the control center for our circulatory system, the brain's health can be protected and boosted with the inclusion of specific foods in our diets, and the avoidance of others.
Senior care can be complicated for an individual who has suffered age-related memory loss, but individuals can continue to benefit from rich diets that provide special nutrients that nourish brain function, so home care nutrition is an essential element of home health care.
Some Foods to Avoid
Foods high in sugar content are considered detrimental to brain health and should be avoided. Such sweet items as sports drinks and soda, and other foods high in sugar content put people at the risk of Type 2 Diabetes, which is linked to an increased risk for Alzheimer's; high blood sugar is also connected to dementia.
Food and drink infused with high fructose corn syrup increase the consumer's risk for memory impairment and brain inflammation, which are detrimental to brain health.
Highly Processed Foods
Subs and hoagies are a welcome sight at any game or party, along with the chips and soda; however, it has been determined that highly processed foods, like deli meat, and bagged snacks, such as popcorn, pretzels, and chips, create barriers to brain health that can lead to cognitive or memory decline.
These highly processed foods are known troublemakers for weight-watchers, because of their high-calorie/low nutritional value. Once the empty calories are consumed, they become visceral fats that have been linked to brain tissue damage.
Some Foods to Remember
While it is important to avoid certain types of delicacies that impede the function of the brain, it is essential to include those healthy foods that have proven to support brain health, such as a few listed here.
Salmon and Sardines
It's a good thing that there are a lot of fish in the sea, or in this case, the stream because Salmon is chock full of the nutrients needed to support memory and brain function. While so much wear and tear of the body results in degeneration, salmon fights against it, and even works to improve mood in the process.
Likewise, sardines are loaded with brain boosters. While sugar tops the list of foods to avoid, sardines have been successful in controlling blood sugar levels; further, they support a healthy nervous system and decrease the risk for Alzheimer's.
Chocolate-lovers will be happy to hear this news. Surprising to many is the inclusion of this sweet treat on the list of foods that promote healthy brain function in seniors. Chocolate stimulates the brain, improves circulation, and reduces blood pressure.
Sipping this delightful beverage, cold or hot, is beneficial to healthy brain function. Without added sugar, it has been proven to relieve symptoms of brain fatigue and increase brain function.
Whether your loved one is receiving in-home care or other home care services, proper nutrition is essential to memory function, as well as overall health. If you need assistance providing high-quality care for a senior, please reach out to us at Comfort Keepers in Warren, NJ at (732) 369-3639, or fill out our contact form on our website.