A message from BEAM's registered dietitian during Alzheimer's and Brain Awareness Month:
Contrary to marketing and media reports, there is no “miracle” food or supplement that will prevent or treat Alzheimer’s disease and dementia as we get older.
The one thing that HAS been shown to help prevent cognitive decline is a varied diet that includes plenty of fruits and vegetables along with fish and seafood while limiting excess sugars and solid fats like those found in red meat.
The antioxidants and omega 3 fatty acids from these foods are shown to have a protective effect on the brain, while excess sugars and saturated fats contribute to the blood vessel damage that leads to brain issues as we age.
And don’t forget the exercise. The latest science on physical activity and the brain points to the fact that exercise not only keeps the brain from declining but actually helps to grow new connections in the brain, improving our cognitive function.
If you are the caregiver for someone who is experiencing Alzheimer’s or cognitive decline, you know that eating may become a challenge due to poor appetite, medications, altered senses of taste and smell, difficulty using utensils, mood changes and difficulty chewing or swallowing, among other issues.
People living with dementia do not need a special diet, but well-balanced meals that contribute to overall health are extremely important. For tips on how to choose foods and how to increase acceptance and appetite for these foods, see: https://www.alz.org/help-…/caregiving/daily-care/food-eating