The results of remaining physically active throughout the aging process are considerable. However, for people with Parkinson’s, it could truly be a game-changer in the progression of the disease. Several recent studies are uncovering direct links between exercise and Parkinson’s, such as the largest clinical study up to now, in which patients who exercised a minimum of 2½ hours weekly obtained a higher quality of life than those who refrained from physical exercise—and that’s only the beginning when it comes to exercise as a Parkinson’s disease treatment.
The start of Parkinson’s symptoms comes about following loss in the brain cells that create dopamine. Researchers think that physical exercise makes it possible for the brain to bring back lost connections, form new ones, and keep maintaining those that are in place. Additional studies show:
Gains were accomplished in stride length, gait speed and balance after treadmill exercise – after only one session, and lasting for a couple of weeks afterwards.
Motor function and coordination were enhanced in those who pedaled at a faster rate on a stationary bike – once again, with benefits lasting for many weeks after the study ended.
Noticeable improvements with the normalcy of movement were detected in individuals with Parkinson’s who engaged in a routine exercise regime in comparison to those that did not.
It’s important to mention that the particular results reached were dependent upon consistent, ongoing exercise. The studies revealed that any protective benefits achieved were interrupted as soon as the amount and intensity of physical exercise was reduced or was employed just for a short period of time. The required criteria for sustainable results there are much like those required to help those who’ve suffered a traumatic brain injury or stroke: intensity, specificity, difficulty and complexity.
More scientific studies are underway to hone in even further on the benefits associated with exercise in those with Parkinson’s disease, and also the precise reasoning behind it. Meanwhile, if your loved one has been clinically determined to have Parkinson’s disease, it’s certainly advantageous to consult with his / her primary care physician for a suggested exercise routine.
For assistance with safe, dependable transportation and accompaniment to a doctor’s appointment or workout program, or support and motivation to take part in an ongoing exercise regimen at home, contact Arizona’s best home care agency, Aventa Senior Care. Our high quality in-home care services are available to enhance quality of life for anyone with Parkinson’s disease, or any other condition of aging throughout Phoenix. Call us at (480) 535-6800 or contact us online to find out more.
Remember Sunday dinners at the grandparents’, whenever the whole family came together round the table to have a hearty meal, chitchat, and laughter? Regrettably, with many families now living far away from their older family members, and with so many pressing needs pulling us in different directions, it’s difficult to keep on with this tradition – and it could be one of the numerous factors adding to the dramatic upsurge in senior malnutrition.
Up to 25% of all senior citizens in the U.S. are malnourished, resulting in critical health issues. For some older adults who live alone, they simply aren’t motivated to cook properly for themselves. Others are experiencing grief, depression, anxiety, cognitive difficulties, poverty, medication side effects, and more and can’t begin to think about ways to prevent malnutrition.
Regardless of the underlying factors, seniors who are malnourished experience compromised immune systems, longer and much more complicated hospital stays, readmissions, and earlier mortality. And revealing malnutrition isn’t as simple as observing weight loss in a senior; those who appear healthy and even overweight can also be fighting with malnourishment problems.
One main element of uncovering senior malnutrition and then addressing it lies in the hands of the healthcare community. Seniors should always be screened for nutrition issues by their primary care doctor, and a dietary plan put in place. When hospitalized, hospital personnel should also consider any potential nutritional requirements, and include their findings and a recommended course of action in discharge paperwork to be reviewed with both caregivers and the senior’s physician.
Loved ones also play an important role in ensuring the nutritional needs of the senior family members are met, and in helping uncover the primary cause if problems are discovered. For example, if financial concerns are preventing the older adult from maintaining a healthy diet plan, he or she may qualify for the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. Currently, up to three out of five older adults that qualify for the program are not using its benefits.
It’s essential to concentrate on signs that your senior family member may possibly not be sticking to a healthy eating plan, and to discuss any concerns with the senior's doctor. You can also turn to Aventa Senior Care for help in establishing better nutritional habits for your senior loved one. We are able to plan and prepare balanced meals, pick up groceries and make certain there are balanced diet options in the fridge and pantry all of the time. Our caregivers also provide friendly companionship, which makes mealtime for your senior family member more pleasurable. To learn more about our San Diego home health services, call us at (619) 535-6000 or contact us online.
Those of us who follow the latest research in Alzheimer’s disease are all too familiar with the troublesome amyloid plaques thought to be linked to Alzheimer’s. But is it possible that the buildup is, in fact, helpful?
Neuroscientists Rudolph Tanzi and Robert Moir, of Massachusetts General, Harvard’s largest teaching hospital, are challenging long held beliefs in the field of Alzheimer's research. They’re suggesting that amyloid-beta is actually a constructive part of our immunity, with the task of protecting the brain from foreign cells; much in the way an oyster develops a pearl, for self-protection. As Moir describes, “Maybe amyloid plaques are a brain pearl, a way for our body to trap and permanently sequester these invading pathogens.”
Amyloid-beta, traditionally seen as our enemy, now becomes our immune system's friend and ally. The problem rests in an accumulation of the plaques that can then impact flourishing brain cells, indicating Alzheimer’s disease.
The results, years in the making, were well worth the wait. The researchers were able to replicate the virus and bacteria killing ability of amyloids in the controlled lab environment, as well as in animal models. It is important to take note that mice producing amyloids were protected against disease such as encephalitis and meningitis, while mice lacking amyloids died within a short period of time.
There are several theories yet to be explored to explain what’s causing overproduction of the amyloid plaques; the immune system could be attacking healthy cells in the brain, similar to other autoimmune disorders; or it could be a sensitivity to a virus or bacteria resulting in an overreaction. Once the cause is pinpointed, it could potentially allow doctors to halt the process in the early stages and prevent the resulting dementia.
As we wait for a research breakthrough that leads to a cure, Aventa Senior Care is a leader in providing dementia care in Mesa for those impacted. Whether the need is for short-term respite care to allow family caregivers a break, full-time, around-the-clock care, or anything in between, we’re available as needed to make life easier for those with dementia and those who are providing them dementia care in Mesa. Call us at (480) 535-6800 or contact us online.
The interesting research of the latest AARP study is in: those who maintain a healthy diet are twice as apt to consider their mental acuity to be very good or excellent in comparison to those who rarely eat well. In particular, a diet full of fish, vegetables and fruits equated to higher brain health.
The participants’ responses match the recommendations of AARP’s Global Council on Brain Health, which also adds the requirement to reduce intake of salt, saturated fats, and excessive alcohol which have been shown to have a negative impact on brain health. Per Sarah Lock, senior vice president for policy and executive director of GCBH, “Many of us have gotten used to the idea of heart-healthy foods, but now we know that those same foods can make a big difference in our brain health, as well.”
If that’s the case, why aren’t more elderly following these simple rules? The issues stated include:
Eating healthy is just too expensive.
It’s tough to follow a healthy diet.
Stores selling healthy foods are too far away.
They won’t enjoy the taste.
They don’t believe it will make a big change in their health.
However, a full 90% of respondents stated they'd do something to eat better if they thought it could cut down on their threat of cardiovascular illnesses, diabetes, and cognitive decline.
So, what is the best brain health diet for seniors? The daily guidelines from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s ChooseMyPlate initiative are the following for seniors:
1 ½ - 2 cups of fruits
2 – 3 cups of vegetables
3 cups of dairy
5 – 6 ounces of protein
5 – 7 ounces of grain
Eating several different sorts of these food types on a frequent basis is key. It is also beneficial to create a plan that will help overcome objections to healthy eating, and also to engage the aid of a trusted family member, friend, or professional caregiver for support to stick to the routine.
Aventa Senior Care can help make healthy eating a reality for aging adults, by choosing groceries and ensuring the fridge and kitchen pantry are well stocked with smart food choices, planning and preparing wholesome meals, and much more! We are able to also provide pleasant companionship during mealtimes to ease the loneliness which could contribute to unhealthy eating, together with encouragement to ensure excellent food choices. Call us at (480) 535-6800 or contact us online to learn more about our Scottsdale home care and the services we offer.