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Antioxidants & Brain Health: Do Our Diets Increase Alzheimer’s or Dementia Risk?

Consider managing the behavioral and cognitive symptoms of dementia rather than following unscientific remedies

Although no cure for Alzheimer’s or dementia is yet available, many people who are genetically predisposed or are in the early stages of these diseases look for alternative treatment methods. For many adults, memory and brain health become a primary concern. Memory games, such as puzzles or matching games, are one way seniors try to work their brains. While physical and cognitive exercises are good as we age, are there other lifestyle changes that can reduce the risk of developing Alzheimer’s disease?

Alternative Methods: What’s the big deal?

With a simple online search, you will quickly be bombarded with “natural” supplements, herbal remedies, and claims about home treatments for Alzheimer’s or dementia. These so-called treatments and prevention methods are harmful for a number of reasons. For one, these products and treatments are based on non-scientific research. There is no reputable proof that these memory enhancers or dementia-delay strategies are effective. Because these claims are not supported by science, the safety and effectiveness are not known. At worst, these false claims may cause more damage than good.

Does Increasing Antioxidants Have an Impact?

In the past, research seemed to indicate that increasing antioxidants in your diet could reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer’s or dementia. The theory was that because Alzheimer’s is caused by damages to the brain’s pathways, fatty acids and antioxidants could repair early damages or prevent future deterioration. More recent studies indicate that antioxidant supplements do not have a significant impact on dementia prevention. [Source]

Positive Steps You Can Take

Although there is no treatment or way to entirely prevent Alzheimer’s or dementia, there are still many proactive ways to maintain brain health. Early detection and frequent check-ins with your senior’s doctor can help you both prepare for the future. Medical professionals and memory care facilities can offer advice and treatments for the cognitive and behavioral symptoms of dementia.

There are positive lifestyle changes you and your senior loved one can take to make living with Alzheimer’s or dementia more positive. Consider researching local memory care facilities and the services and resources they provide.

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For more information about  memory care services provided by ComfortCare Homes, please call our office at (316) 444-0532.

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