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  • Фото автораЭйнат Дворкин-Хамеири

The Mediterranean diet and dementia

Is it possible to stop the deterioration of dementia that affects elderly people? Apparently the answer is almost no, but a British man whose 82-year-old mother dived into dementia managed to stop the process and even improve her memory - all with the help of the Mediterranean diet.

Yes, yes, it turns out that the Middle East is not only beaches and wars but also a place where many elderly people do not suffer from dementia, so probably its traditional foods (that does not mean shawarma and calvados) improve memory.

According to an article published in "Israel Hayom" newspaper, it all started when 82-year-old retiree Sylvia Hazer suffered from severe dementia and did not even recognize her son Mark. As a result of the deepening of dementia, it was necessary to hospitalize Sylvia for her personal safety.

At this point Mark decided to do his best to improve his mother's condition as she remained the only member of his family. "My father and brother had already passed away and my mother and I remained a small and warm family unit. So I was determined to do everything to maintain my mother's abilities. We became very close over the years and I drew a lot of support from my relationship with her," he said.

As part of Mark's attempt to stop the disease, he discovered that in the Middle East many people do not suffer from dementia, so he switched his mother to a diet based on Mediterranean fruits and vegetables.

The change in his mother’s menu worked wonders and some of her cognitive skills, including her son’s identification, returned. Although Sylvia's illness has not stopped completely, it is now being presented by the British Association for Dementia as an example of how the disease can be temporarily blocked.

The Middle Eastern and Mediterranean diet emphasize the use of olive oil, fruits, vegetables, fish, whole grains, and legumes as primary foods. Since saturated fat and cholesterol are only found in animal-based foods, this kind of diet is very low in both. Instead, heart-healthy fats, like the monounsaturated and omega-3 fatty acids provided by olive oil and fish, are the primary sources of fats. On this diet, you obtain protein from legumes and fish instead of red meat or poultry.

The Middle Eastern diet can also benefit the health of your brain, cognition and overall mortality. Analysis published in the "British Medical Journal" explored the overall health benefits of the Mediterranean diet. The review analyzed 12 studies that tested the effects of a Mediterranean diet on mortality, Parkinson's, Alzheimer's and heart disease of a total 1.5 million people. According to this review, a Mediterranean-style diet can reduce overall mortality and mortality from cancer or heart disease, as well as the risk of developing Parkinson's or Alzheimer's, wrights Laura Niedziocha.

Here in our blog we will publish the best and simplest receipts of the most popular and healthy Middle Eastern cuisine. We are sure it will help you, dear foreign caregivers, to learn quickly the principles of the Mediterranean diet and strengthen the health of your patients and yourself.

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