UCB Canada reports that more than 100,000 adults living in the country have some stage of Parkinson’s disease, and nearly 7,000 new cases are diagnosed every year. The disorder commonly develops in adults over the age of 60. However, 10 percent of cases begin before the age of 50. There are a variety of prescription medications and therapies designed to alleviate symptoms and slow Parkinson’s progression. However, seniors can also manage Parkinson’s symptoms by adopting the following strategies.
1. Limit Protein Intake
Physicians found that diets rich in protein interfere with the body’s ability to absorb levodopa medications. Seniors with Parkinson’s should consider limiting protein intake to 12 percent of their daily calories. In fact, older adults should take their medications at least two hours before meals or take iron supplements on an empty stomach to ensure optimal absorption.
Some seniors need help making healthy lifestyle choices. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care. Winnipeg Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives.
2. Eat Healthy Foods
Daily meals should consist of nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables along with lean meats. Raw produce contains antioxidants that reduce inflammation while combating free radicals that contribute to cell damage. Fiber-rich foods prevent constipation, which is often a concern for seniors with Parkinson’s. Healthy fats in the form of avocados, coconut, olive oil, nuts, nut butter, and seeds protect delicate nerve tissue. Oily fish and other foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids also reduce inflammation while increasing dopamine levels. Green tea contains a compound called theanine, which increases dopamine levels. Consuming three cups of green tea on a daily basis provides an abundance of antioxidants.
3. Avoid Harmful Foods
The Michael J. Fox Foundation advises that certain foods may cause medication interactions, which renders them ineffective. Some foods also increase inflammation. The list of foods includes:
- Aged cheese
- Alcoholic cocktails
- Artificial sweeteners and sugar
- Beer and red wines
- Cured, fermented, or otherwise processed meats
- Fermented cabbage
- Soy products
4. Consider Supplements
There are various supplements that can enhance muscle strength and alleviate Parkinson’s symptoms. Some of the best supplements and their benefits are listed as follows:
- 1,200 milligrams of coenzyme Q10 daily slows the progression of Parkinson’s due to antioxidant activity
- 1,500 milligrams of calcium and 800 IU of vitamin D daily ensures bone health
- 1,000 milligrams of omega-3 fatty acids reduces inflammation and protects nerve cells
- 750 milligrams of vitamin C daily strengthens the immune system while reducing inflammation
- 400 IU of vitamin E provides antioxidant activity
- Green vegetable powder supplements created from chlorella, spirulina, or wheatgrass aid in detoxification while adding nutrients
Before taking any new supplements, make sure your loved one consults his or her doctor.
5. Exercise Regularly
Exercising on a regular basis reduces depression and inflammation and promotes the release of chemical compounds that protect nerve cells. Physical activity is known to encourage endorphin production, which minimizes pain. Exercise also increases strength, flexibility, and balance. Recommended activities include water aerobics and tai chi. Additionally, gentle stretching each day reduces muscle pain and stiffness.
Some seniors with Parkinson’s need help exercising or managing other daily activities. Aging adults who require assistance with the tasks of daily living can benefit from reliable senior home care. Winnipeg, MB, families trust in Home Care Assistance to provide the high-quality care their elderly loved ones need and deserve. Our caregivers are trained to help seniors prevent and manage serious illnesses and encourage them to make healthier decisions as they age.
6. Engage in DIY Gait Training
Seniors with Parkinson’s often develop mobility issues. However, simple techniques can increase walking ability and balance. Seniors should concentrate on stepping heel to toe and taking large steps. To ensure balance, older adults should keep their feet shoulder length apart before turning, and they can walk to a favorite song or a metronome to increase fluidity.
Caring for seniors with serious health issues can be a challenging task. Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Winnipeg, MB, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity. To learn about our high-quality in-home care options, call one of our professional Care Managers at (204) 489 6000 today.