Tag Archives: caregivers

Walnuts – A Crucial Factor against Alzheimer’s

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From Alzheimer’s News Today:

A recent study revealed the potential of a walnut-enriched diet to benefit brain-health. The animal study was published in the Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease and details how a diet including walnuts may have positive effects against Alzheimer’s disease by reducing the risk of contracting the disease, delaying the onset, and slowing the progression.

The research was led by Abha Chauhan, PhD, head of the Developmental Neuroscience Laboratory at the New York State Institute for Basic Research in Developmental Disabilities (IBR) and the outcomes are that mice fed with a walnut-enriched diet had substantial improvement in memory, learning skills, motor development, and reduced anxiety.

The high antioxidant portion existent in walnuts (3.7 mmol/ounce) may act as a brain protective factor against the degeneration common in Alzheimer’s disease. Both oxidative stress and inflammation are prominent features in Alzheimer’s disease.

More than 5 million people in the US are affected by Alzheimer’s disease.

Tokens of Love: Heartfelt Gifts Ease Senior Loneliness and Isolation

This post originally appeared on the LivHome blog.

More than 40% of adults over 60 feel lonely on a regular basis, and the cost of senior isolation is high: chronic loneliness among older adults is a predictor of functional decline and even death. Unfortunately, in our modern times seniors and their families often live far apart. How do we stay close to older loved ones when we can’t see them every day?

I believe very strongly in the power of thoughtful gifts to ease senior isolation. Gifts are a great way to show love when you’re not able to visit. Don’t know what to get? Here are a few gift guidelines:

  • Keep it simple. Most people over 60 have all the “stuff” they need. Rather than sending large or expensive items, send a few smaller gifts. Things that they can use such as snacks, stationery, and personal care items are always appreciated.
  • Make it pretty. Nicely wrapped presents, no matter what they are, really show that you care.
  • Make it personal. The best part of the gift is the thought behind it. That warm feeling of being loved lasts much longer than the present itself. Personal touches like photos and a note add a great deal to the gift experience.

My own grandparents live thousands of miles away. The best part about sending them gifts is always the phone call that comes when the package arrives, when I can hear the joy in their voices. These experiences inspired me to create a service that helps other people stay close to their older loved ones.

My company Gramsly makes care packages for seniors, and we customize each one based on the intended recipient. I love learning about my customer’s loved ones and and choosing the perfect gifts for them. Every box tells a unique story that I feel privileged to share. One person sent a Gramsly box to celebrate a 99th birthday. Another client sent a box to her grandmother who was unable to attend her upcoming wedding. Gramsly boxes are also sent as “get well” gifts or holiday presents. In all cases, the senior recipients are overjoyed that someone thought enough of them to send a present. Most importantly, the gift giving invariably leads to a heartfelt conversation between the giver and the recipient, bringing them closer together.

Every day Gramsly helps families stay connected. If you’d like to send a gift to someone special, please visit our website for more information.

When an Aging Parent Moves In

We’ve written before about people who care for their aging parents while supporting their own children (the sandwich generation). Many people struggle with the best way to care for an older parent, and a looming question is whether or not a parent should move in with an adult child. 

Family Education has a great article on how to navigate the complex decision to move in an older parent. Factors to consider include:

  • Space limitations. Think carefully about how much space you have in your home. Shared living tends to work best in large homes, or those with separate bedroom and bathroom facilities. 

  • Practical matters. Other than space, what other limitations might your home have for an aging parent? Perhaps the hallways aren’t wide enough to accommodate Dad’s wheelchair, or there are more steps than he’s able to handle.

  • Family dynamics. Never move an aging parent into your home at the risk of jeopardizing your relationships with your own family members.

  • Amount of care. Think about how much time and energy you really have to care for an elderly parent in your home. If you work, will you be able to manage care-giving in addition to your job?

Moving in an aging parent can come with significant financial and emotional costs. We think this is the best advice from the article: “If you decide to invite Mom to move in with you, be sure you have backup.”