Over the years, scientists have made all kinds of suggestions about what kinds of foods can keep brains healthy as they age. They’ve made claims about eating mushrooms, following a Mediterranean diet and eating more fiber.
Certainly, eating a healthy diet improves overall health and even the health of the brain. But, are there specific foods that can make a difference? Some scientists think so. In fact, a recent group of researchers suggests that drinking tart cherry juice may be the key.
Cherry Juice and the Brain
The study was conducted by researchers at the University of Delaware in Newark and led by assistant professor Sheau Ching Chai. The study involved 37 participants between the ages of 65 and 80. All of the participants had normal cognitive function. They were not on any medications that could affect the way the brain functions. They also had not been diagnosed with serious conditions like diabetes, heart disease, or cancer.
The participants were placed into two groups. One group drank two cups of tart cherry juice daily for three months. The other group drank a liquid that mimicked cherry juice in flavor, appearance, and sugar content. It contained no cherry juice. Neither group knew which drink they were receiving.
The results of the study showed that participants who drank the cherry group saw several benefits, such as:
- A 5 % subjective improvement of their contentment with their memory.
- 23 % fewer errors in episodic visual memory.
- 3 % better visual sustained attention.
- 18 % fewer mistakes in spatial memory tasks.
Other Ways to Protect Brain Health
One study does not prove the brain health benefits of cherry juice, but it probably won’t hurt to add some to your aging relative’s diet. Just be careful of the sugar content. There are lots of other steps seniors and their caregivers can take to protect brain health, such as:
-Engaging in activities that stimulate the brain, like doing crossword puzzles, learning a new skill, or taking a class.
-Sleep between 7 and 9 hours per night, which gives the brain time to reset and repair damaged cells.
-Prevent falls because they could result in a head injury, which can damage the brain.
-Eat a healthy diet and exercise.
-Stay socially involved.
Elderly care can be an important part of improving your older family member’s brain health. An elderly care provider can involve the older adult in stimulating activities, like playing a game or doing a crossword puzzle with them. Elderly care providers can also offer transportation to classes and seminars as well as to places where the senior can socialize with others. In addition, elderly care can cook healthy meals and keep the older adult more physically active.
Are you or a loved-one considering hiring Home Health Care in Herndon, VA? Please call the caring staff at Medical Professionals On Call today. Contact: 703-273-8818