Memory Boosting Superfoods That Fight Alzheimer’s
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September 22, 2016
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In order to get enough of these brain boosters, you’ll want to make sure your loved one stocks up on these foods:

Vegetables, especially leafy greens like spinach, kale, turnip greens and cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, which have been strongly linked to lower levels of cognitive decline in older age, according to a study in the Annals of Neurology.

Salmon and other cold-water fish, such as halibut, tuna, mackerel and sardines, which are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Other omega-3 sources include beans, some nuts, flax seeds and healthy oils, like olive oil.

Berries and dark-skinned fruits which are rich in antioxidants. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, some of the fruits that pack the most punch are blueberries, blackberries, strawberries, raspberries, plums, oranges, red grapes and cherries.

Coffee and chocolate are surprisingly good for you. Recent studies have shown that caffeine and coffee can be used as therapeutics against Alzheimer’s disease. The caffeine and antioxidants in these two tasty treats may help ward off age-related memory impairment, along with cinnamon, olive oil and curry.

Extra virgin olive oil contains a substance called oleocanthal that helps boost the production of key proteins and enzymes that help break down the amyloid plaques associated with Alzheimer’s disease.

Cold-pressed virgin coconut oil is a heart-healthy oil that is free of cholesterol and trans-fats, and boosts ketones. Coconut oil has been shown to improve the body’s use of insulin, increase HDL (good cholesterol), boost thyroid function and acting as an antioxidant and natural antibiotic.

Sources:

Clarke R, et al. Folate, vitamin B12, and serum total homocysteine levels in confirmed Alzheimer disease. Arch Neurol. 1998 Nov;55(11):1449-55.

Desilets AR, et al. Role of huperzine a in the treatment of Alzheimer’s disease. Ann Pharmacother. 2009 Mar;43(3):514-8.

Gu Y, et al. Food combination and Alzheimer disease risk: a protective diet. Arch Neurol. 2010 Jun;67(6):699-706.

Lourida I, et al. Mediterranean diet, cognitive function, and dementia: a systematic review. Epidemiology. 2013 Jul;24(4):479-89.

Mandel SA, et al. Understanding the Broad-Spectrum Neuroprotective Action Profile of Green Tea Polyphenols in Aging and Neurodegenerative Diseases. J Alzheimers Dis. 2011;25(2):187-208.

Mangialasche F, et al. High plasma levels of vitamin E forms and reduced Alzheimer’s disease risk in advanced age. J Alzheimers Dis. 2010;20(4):1029-37.

Pettegrew JW, et al. Clinical and neurochemical effects of acetyl-L-carnitine in Alzheimer’s disease. Neurobiol Aging. 1995 Jan-Feb;16(1):1-4.

Scarmeas N, et al. Physical activity, diet, and risk of Alzheimer disease. JAMA. 2009 Aug 12;302(6):627-37.6. Unlisted. Citicoline. Alt Med Rev. 2008;13(1):50-7.

Baum L, et al. Six-month randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind, pilot clinical trial of curcumin in patients with Alzheimer disease. J Clin Psychopharmacol. 2008 Feb;28(1):110-3

Cardoso BR. Importance and management of micronutrient deficiencies in patients with Alzheimer’s disease. Clin Interv Aging. 2013;8:531-42.

101 Activities
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September 22, 2016
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1

Listen to music

 

2

Toss a ball

 

3

Color pictures

 

4

Make homemade lemonade

 

5

Count trading cards

 

6

Clip coupons

 

7

Sort poker chips

 

8

Read out loud chapters from Harry Potter books or other favorite stories

 

9

Rake leaves

 

10

String beads

 

11

Bake cookies

 

12

Take photos of the person and you and create a collage

 

13

Brush or comb one another’s hair

 

14

Participate in the Alzheimer’s Association Walk to End Alzheimer’s.
To learn more about Walk, please click here.

15

Plant seeds indoors or outdoors

 

16

Look at family photographs

 

17

Wipe off the kitchen table

 

18

Weed the flowerbed or tend to the garden

 

19

Fold laundry

 

20

Have a friend visit with a well-behaved pet

 

21

Cut pictures out of greeting cards or magazines

 

22

Play dominoes

 

23

Ask the person about his or her favorite childhood books or cartoon characters (you can share yours too)

 

24

Bake homemade bread

 

25

Sort objects by shape or color

 

26

Sing old songs

 

27

Invite the person to tell you more when he or she talks about a memory

 

28

Put silverware away

 

29

Make a Valentine card

 

30

Play favorite songs and sing

 

31

Ask the person about his or her brothers or sisters

 

32

Make a cherry pie

 

33

Play with tops or jacks

 

34

Make a scrapbook

 

35

Take a walk around the yard

 

36

Write a poem together

 

37

Reminisce about the first day of school

 

38

String Cheerios® to hang outside for birds

 

39

Make a fresh fruit salad

 

40

Sweep the patio

 

41

Color paper shamrocks green

 

42

Fold towels

 

43

Have an afternoon tea party

 

44

Talk about great inventions

 

45

Look through the pages of a clothes catalog

 

46

Look at a map of the United States and identify states and capitals

 

47

Make a family tree poster

 

48

Color a picture of our flag

 

49

Eat a picnic lunch outside

 

50

Water house plants

 

51

Play horseshoes

 

52

Dance

 

53

Watch Sesame Street together

 

54

Make homemade ice cream

 

55

Make holiday cards

 

56

Reminisce about favorite sports activities the person enjoyed while growing up

 

57

Write a letter to a friend or family member

 

58

Dress in your favorite football or soccer team’s color

 

59

Pop popcorn

 

60

Name the presidents

 

61

Give a manicure

 

62

Make paper butterflies

 

63

Plant a tree

 

64

Finish famous sayings

 

65

Feed the ducks

 

66

Model with play dough

 

67

Look at pictures in a comic book

 

68

Put a puzzle together

 

69

Sand wood

 

70

Rub in hand lotion

 

71

Arrange fresh flowers

 

72

Remember famous people

 

73

Recite nursery rhymes

 

74

Make peanut butter sandwiches

 

75

Cut up used paper for scratch paper

 

76

Blow bubbles

 

77

Take care of a fish tank

 

78

Bake cupcakes and decorate them

 

79

Interview the person about his or her life using either a video camera or cassette recorder

 

80

Play Hangman

 

81

Finger paint

 

82

Cut out pictures from magazines

 

83

Put coins in a jar

 

84

Put bird seed out for the birds

 

85

Decorate a pumpkin

 

86

Reminisce about a favorite summer

 

87

Roll yarn into a ball

 

88

Trace and cut out autumn leaves

 

89

Cook a favorite family recipe together

 

90

Gather a yellow sponge, crayons, paper and tape and make a SpongeBob SquarePants

 

91

Wash silverware

 

92

Give him or her a hug

 

93

Ask the person to show you how to knit or sew (or another favorite hobby)

 

94

Make a picture frame our of popsicle sticks and glitter

 

95

Play a musical instrument

 

96

Keep a journal together

 

97

Ask the person to talk about his or her favorite sports hero

 

98

Sort playing cards

 

99

Ask the person about his or her favorite pet

 

100

Wash windows together

 

101

Ask the person about his or her first car
10 Stimulating Activities for Alzheimer’s Patients
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September 22, 2016
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Dementia can cause seniors to withdraw from activities, family and friends. But maintaining those relationships and interests reduces the effects of severe cognitive impairment, leading to a better quality of life.images

The most common form of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease impairs behavior, memory and thought. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, Alzheimer’s accounts for 50-80% of dementia cases. While memory loss may start out mild in early stages, the disease worsens over time. Eventually, it can restrict a person’s ability to carry on a conversation or even respond to people or surroundings.

Activities Bring Pleasure to People with Alzheimer’s

Keeping aging loved ones active in hobbies and interests that gave them pleasure in the past is important after a disease diagnosis. These stimulating activities for Alzheimer’s help:

  • Stir memories
  • Foster emotional connections with others
  • Encourage self-expression
  • Lessen the anxiety and irritability that Alzheimer’s may bring
  • Make people with Alzheimer’s feel more engaged with life

What activities best suit people with Alzheimer’s? That depends on the individual. As AARP.org describes, it is important to create meaningful activities, not just ones that fill time. Consider interests they had in the past, knowing that some activities may need to be modified for safety or practicality. Keep in mind that Alzheimer’s affects behavior and senses in addition to memory. So, activities that a person once enjoyed may become overwhelming or even frustrating now.

Suggested Activities for Seniors With Alzheimer’s

Here are 10 activities to try with your loved one. Certain activities may work better at different times of day. Understand that the person’s level of interest or involvement may decline as Alzheimer’s progresses.

  1. Sing songs or play music.
  2. Do arts and crafts, such as painting or knitting. Keep tools and patterns simple.
  3. Organize household or office items, particularly if the person used to take pleasure in organizational tasks.
  4. Clean around the house. Sweep the patio, wipe the table, fold towels or try other household tasks that help the person feel a sense of accomplishment.
  5. Tend the garden or visit a botanical garden.
  6. Read the newspaper.
  7. Look at books the person used to enjoy.
  8. Cook or bake simple recipes together.
  9. Work on puzzles.
  10. Watch family videos.

Take a Flexible, Supportive Approach

If your loved one resists an activity, take a break. You can try again later, or ask your loved one how the activity can be changed to make it more enjoyable for them.

Remember to concentrate on the process of an activity and not the results. It does not matter if you never get the puzzle put together. What matters is that your loved one enjoyed the time spent on it and felt useful.

What activities does your loved one with Alzheimer’s enjoy? Please share your insights below.

Take the SAGE test to spot early signs of dementia or Alzheimer’s
September 8, 2016
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Take the SAGE test to spot early signs of dementia or Alzheimer’s

. Photo: Ohio State University

A 15-minute test conducted at home can indicate early signs of mental decline that might be the first glimmer of Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

US researchers who asked more than 1,000 people aged 50 and older to take the self-adminstered Sage test found that 28% had cognitive impairment, a mild loss of mental functioning.

The results closely matched those from detailed diagnostic tests carried out by experts.

While the Self-Administered Gerocognitive Exam (SAGE) test cannot diagnose patients’ problems, it gives doctors a “baseline” of mental function so that progressive changes can be tracked over time.

Try the test yourself – you’ll need a pen and to print out this page:

1. From memory, what is today’s date?

Date_________ Month________ Year____________

2. Name the following pictures (spelling is not important):

article_update_img.jpg
. Credit: Ohio State University

3. How are a bicycle and a train similar? Write down how they are both alike. They are…. what?


4. How many 5p coins would it take to pay 35p?


5. You are buying £1.95 of groceries. How much change should you receive from a £5 note?


6. Memory test – remember these instructions. Do later only after completing the test.

At the bottom of the last page write “I am finished” on the blank line provided.

7. Copy this picture

article_update_img.jpg
. Credit: Ohio State University

8. Drawing test

  • Draw the face of a clock and write in the numbers
  • Position the hands for 5 minutes past 11
  • On the clock, label ‘L’ for the long hand and ‘S’ for the short hand

article_update_img.jpg
Draw the clock in the space above.

9. Write down the name of 12 different animals (spelling is not important)

1 _______________________

2 _______________________

3 _______________________

4 _______________________

5 _______________________

6 _______________________

7 _______________________

8 _______________________

9 _______________________

10 _______________________

11 _______________________

12 _______________________

Look at this example, then go to question 10

article_update_img.jpg
. Credit: Ohio State University

10. Do the following

Draw a line from one circle to another starting at 1 and alternating numbers and letters in order before anding at F (1 to A to 2 to B and so on).

article_update_img.jpg
. Credit: Ohio State University

Look at this example, then go to question 11**

  • Beginning with 6 squares
  • Cross out 1 line (marked with an X)
  • Leaving 5 squares
  • Each line must be part of a complete square (no extra lines)

article_update_img.jpg
. Credit: Ohio State University

11. Solve the following problem

  • Beginning with 5 squares
  • Cross out 3 lines (mark with an X)
  • Leaving 4 squares
  • Each line must be part of a complete square (no extra lines)

article_update_img.jpg
. Credit: Ohio State University

12. Have you finished?


If you struggled with the test, take the paper to your GP.

Remember that SAGE (test) does not diagnose any specific condition.

The results of SAGE will not tell you if you have Alzheimer’s disease, mini-strokes or any number of other disorders.

But the results can help your doctor know if further evaluation is necessary.

– Ohio State University

Other examples of the SAGE test can be downloaded here, here, here and here.

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