A healthy and active lifestyle is vital for promoting neurological and cognitive health for individuals of all ages, but is especially important for the aging adult. By maintaining a balanced and nutrient-rich diet, and remaining socially active and physically fit, seniors and older adults can actively combat memory loss and keep their life qualities at an all-time high.
What Seniors Should Be Eating
Although fat has long been given a bad rap, there are a number of fats that your brain needs to function optimally. These can be found in fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel and tuna. You can also find healthy fats in olive oil, coconut oil, nuts, nut butters and avocado. While the human metabolism undergoes a gradual and inevitable slowdown after the age of 30, people should continue including healthy fats in their diets in order to maintain their neurological health. Weight gain can also be avoided by eschewing trans fats such as those that are found in processed food products.
A diet that is comprised entirely of fresh, unprocessed foods that are served closest to their natural state is best. This diet should include a colorful array of fruits and vegetables. Seniors and their family caregivers should know that phytonutrients and antioxidants are found in different combinations in fruits and vegetables according to their colors, so adding a veritable rainbow of produce to the diet is ideal. If you have an aging parent who struggles with getting fresh produce or preparing meals, consider help from a professional caregiver in the Lehigh Valley. These individuals are trained and can provide reliable transportation to the grocery store, assist with nutritious meal preparation, help with light housekeeping and so much more.
What Seniors Should Be Doing
Exercise is a vital part of preventing memory loss. The body has to work hard to pump blood, oxygen and nutrients all the way up to the brain, and the challenge of getting these vital nutrients up to the brain increases as arteries harden, constrict and become lined with plaque becomes more difficult with age. Fortunately, physical activity promotes good circulation and good oxygen delivery to help reverse these effects. There are many safe and effective activities that seniors can safely engage in, including cycling, swimming, dance classes and low-impact aerobics. Even getting in a daily walk can do wonders for one’s brain and overall health. In fact, the opposite arm and leg movements that walking requires are great brain stimulation and thus, walking is one of the most effective exercises for brain fitness!
What Seniors Should Be Enjoying
Staying positive is also an important part of preventing memory loss. Happy people tend to be healthy people given that they’re brains are constantly producing and using important, feel-good chemicals like serotonin and dopamine. Taking part in senior activities at local recreation centers, volunteering within the community and engaging in lifelong learning are all things that aging adults can do to improve their life qualities through social involvement. When mobility is limited, caregivers can assist their loved ones in maintaining robust social lives by scheduling visits with family members or planning routine outings. In-home companionship care, available on a part-time or live-in basis, is also a great option that can provide seniors with company they need to ward off feelings of depression and loneliness that can sometimes accompany living at home in one’s elder years.
Have other questions about memory care for seniors? Reach out to Home Care Assistance of the Lehigh Valley. Our highly qualified and compassionate caregivers provide flexible hourly and 24 hour home care, and also specialize in Alzheimer’s and dementia care for Lehigh Valley seniors. To learn more about our in-home care options, request a complimentary, no-obligation consultation with a friendly Care Manager at 484-350-3874 today.