Alzheimer’s is one of the diseases that requires more attention from caregivers. For this reason, today we want to call for reflection on the importance of self-care for those who are in charge of patients with this condition.
We must start by understanding that Alzheimer’s is a progressive pathology, where there is less brain production of a neurotransmitter called acetylcholine. This causes a deterioration in the performance of the cholinergic circuits of the brain system and leads to cognitive deterioration that affects the performance of activities of daily living and, in turn, affects mental functions such as memory, language or reasoning as well as a general deterioration.
The importance of food
Food plays a fundamental role in achieving balance in the body, mind and spirit. It is important to include both micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) and macronutrients (carbohydrates, proteins and fats).
The former help the growth and development of the body, maintain a healthy immune system, strengthen bones and teeth, help absorb calcium, contribute to blood health, promote the proper functioning of the brain and nervous system.
Harmony of body and mind
Each of the vitamins has functions to achieve that harmony that our body and mind need and the minerals make different contributions. For example, calcium benefits the nervous system, bones, teeth and blood coagulation, cobalt stimulates the production of red blood cells and copper contributes to the maintenance of body tissues such as the liver, brain, kidneys and heart.
Some foods that contain minerals and vitamins are: carrots, broccoli, sweet pepper, eggs, fish, oranges, bananas, avocado, tomatoes, onions, beets and ginger. In a plate of food, the more colorful foods it contains, the more vitamins and minerals it provides.
Macronutrients promote intestinal health, regulate blood cholesterol levels, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes and cancer, and help hormone production. In the case of carbohydrates, they are the first source of energy in the body, proteins help the growth and repair of tissues and fats help the absorption of vitamins.
There are other complementary recommendations to food that help caregivers carry all stages of Alzheimer’s disease in a healthy way. Conscious breathing helps lower stress and anxiety levels. This practice has multiple health benefits and helps keep your heart rate stable.
Likewise, there are alternative therapies endorsed by the World Health Organization (WHO), which are also part of a healthy life. For example, music therapy that among other things relaxes, stimulates memory, increases self-esteem and promotes new social relationships.
Dancing is a way to perform physical activity, it helps coordination and flexibility and slows down the brain aging process. For its part, meditation provides deep relaxation, promotes a calm mind, reduces stress and muscle tension and improves breathing. To achieve harmony in body, mind and spirit we must lead a healthy life in order to avoid “diseases” and be able to take care of others.