10 Foods to Prevent Alzheimer's and Dementia (2024)

A combination of genetic, environmental, and lifestyle factors like diet and nutrition are said to be the cause of Dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.

Health conditions like diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and obesity may also contribute to cognitive decline. These conditions are often affected by the foods you eat. Therefore, practicing good nutrition and eating healthy foods can help reduce your risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease as you become older.

Alzheimer's and Dementia Difference

Source

While dementia is a general term, Alzheimer's disease is a specific brain disease. It is marked by symptoms of dementia that gradually get worse over time.

Alzheimer's disease first affects the part of the brain associated with learning, so early symptoms often include changes in memory, thinking and reasoning skills. As the disease progresses, symptoms become more severe and include confusion, changes in behavior and other challenges.

Who is Most at Risk for Developing Alzheimer Disease?

The greatest known risk factor for Alzheimer’s and other dementias is increasing age, but these disorders are not a normal part of aging. While age increases risk, it is not a direct cause of Alzheimer's.

Most individuals with the disease are 65 and older. After age 65, the risk of Alzheimer's doubles every five years. After age 85, the risk reaches nearly one-third.

Another strong risk factor is family history. Those who have a parent, brother or sister with Alzheimer’s are more likely to develop the disease. The risk increases if more than one family member has the illness. When diseases tend to run in families, either heredity (genetics), environmental factors, or both, may play a role.

While age, family history and heredity are all risk factors we can’t change, research is beginning to reveal clues about other risk factors we may be able to influence through general lifestyle and wellness choices and effective management of other health conditions.

10 Foods to Prevent Alzheimer's and Dementia

1. Omega 3 Fatty Acids Foods
Omega 3 fatty acids help the brain to stay in top shape. People whose diets contain daily omega 3s have been shown to have 26% less risk of having brain lesions that cause dementia compared with those who do not.

Omega 3 Fatty Acids Foods : Fish, flax seeds, olive oil (not safflower) and good quality omega 3 supplements.

2. Beans and legumes
Beans and legumes contain folate, iron, magnesium and potassium that can help with general body function and neuron firing. They also have choline, a B vitamin that boosts acetylcholine (a neuro transmitter critical for brain function).

3. Cinnamon, sage, turmeric and cumin
Theses spices help to break up brain plaque and reduce inflammation of the brain which can cause memory issues. They also help with decreasing inflammation and controlling blood glucose, which is important for Alzheimer’s.

4. Green Vegetables
These foods are high in folate and B9, which improve cognition and reduce depression. Green vegetables include kale, spinach, collard and mustard greens.

5. Cruciferous vegetables
Broccoli, cauliflower, bok choy, brussels sprouts and kale contain folate and have carotenoids that lower homo-cysteine (an amino acid linked with cognitive impairment).

6. Berries and cherries
These fruits contain anthocyanin that protects the brain from further damage caused by free radicals. They also have anti-inflammatory properties and contain antioxidants and lots of vitamin C and E.

7. Whole grains
Whole grains include quinoa, kamut and gluten-free oats. Avoid bread and cereal.

8. Pumpkin, squash, asparagus, tomatoes, carrots and beets
These vegetables contain vitamin A, folate and iron that help with cognition.

9. Almonds, cashews, walnuts, hazelnuts, peanuts and pecans
These nuts have omega-3s and omega-6s, vitamin E, folate, vitamin B6 and magnesium.

10. Sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds.
These seeds contain zinc, choline and vitamin E.

What Foods should Alzheimer's Patients Avoid?

1. Margarine
A University of Minnesota study found a possible link between diacetyl (an ingredient in margarine) and Alzheimer’s disease (AD), the most common form of dementia. Specifically, researchers cite evidence showing diacetyl may contribute to the formation of the same type of protein clusters associated with AD.

Healthier Alternatives to Margarine
  • Pureed avocado or all-natural nut butter (for toast)
  • Olive oil or coconut oil (for cooking)
  • Greek yogurt or pumpkin puree (for baking)

2. Fried Foods
Advanced glycation end products (AGEs) are chemicals released in fried foods that tend to make cells age faster, including ones in the brain. If your loved one already has dementia, a steady diet of fried foods may speed up brain cell damage. Steaming is a healthier cooking method.

3. Soda & Other Sugary Beverages
Soda and sugary drinks have been linked to diabetes, which is considered a risk factor for vascular dementia.

A study involving lab animals found changes occurred in their brains after nearly a month of being fed sugary water. These changes were observed in parts of the brain that control memory-related abilities, suggesting cognitive functions could be affected by consuming drinks containing sugar.

Alternatives to soda and sugary beverages
  • Herbal teas
  • Homemade smoothies
  • Sparkling water or coconut water
  • Green tea

4. Processed Meats
Compounds called nitrosamines are often found in processed meats, such as ham, hot dogs, sausage, and salami. Nitrosamines cause the liver to produce fats that are considered toxic when they travel to the brain. These fats also have the potential to damage brain cells and make dementia-related symptoms worse. These same compounds can also be found in processed cheeses, certain types of beer, and refined grains.

5. Foods Containing MSG
Many people associate a flavor enhancer known as MSG (monosodium glutamate) with Chinese food. However, it’s also found in frozen dinners, certain snack foods, some brands of salad dressing, and other foods. For seniors with dementia, the issue with this food additive is that it can make dementia-related symptoms more noticeable or intense. Additionally, MSG has been associated with an increase in nervous system sensitivity and elevated levels of the beta amyloid protein related to Alzheimer’s disease and other forms of dementia.

How to Reduce Your Risk of Getting Alzheimer's?

You can help reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s by making healthy lifestyle choices. Here’s what you can do:
  • Prevent and manage high blood pressure. Tens of millions of American adults have high blood pressure, and many do not have it under control.
  • Manage blood sugar. Learn how to manage your blood sugar if you have diabetes.
  • Maintain a healthy weight. Healthy eating and regular physical activity can help you maintain a healthy weight.
  • Be physically active. Physical activity can improve thinking, reduce risk of depression and anxiety, and help you sleep better.
  • Avoid excessive drinking. If you drink, do so in moderation.
  • Prevent and correct hearing loss. Make sure to talk to a hearing care professional to treat and manage hearing loss.
  • Get enough sleep. A third of American adults report that they usually get less sleep than the recommended amount. How much sleep do you need? It depends on your age.
If it seems overwhelming to make all these changes at once, try making them gradually. For example, getting an extra 30 minutes of sleep at night, getting an annual physical exam, or simply taking a walk every day may make a big difference to your cognitive health.

FAQs

a. What Are the Early Signs of Alzheimer's Disease?


b. Is There a Cure for Alzheimer's Disease?

Currently, there is no cure for Alzheimer's disease. Some sites suggest that products like coconut oil or nutritional supplements can treat or postpone Alzheimer's disease. However, these statements are not backed by any scientific evidence.

Several medications have received FDA approval for the treatment of Alzheimer's disease, and some treatments and medications may assist manage behavioral symptoms.

c. Do Memory Problems Always Mean Alzheimer's Disease?

Many people are concerned about forgetfulness. They believe that forgetting is the first symptom of Alzheimer's. However, not everyone who has memory issues has Alzheimer's.

Other factors that can contribute to memory issues include age, illnesses, emotional issues, moderate cognitive impairment, or another form of dementia.

@consciousdee Wise words.. Think before you eat #spiritualawakening #disclosure #conspiracy #ascension #thirdeye #raiseyourvibration #universalconsciousness #grounding #energy ♬ Spooky, quiet, scary atmosphere piano songs - Skittlegirl Sound

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