6 Ways Older Adults Can Prevent Lou Gehrig’s Disease

By Lutgarda Mariano, 9:00 am on

There is no known cure for Lou Gehrig’s Disease, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), but there are some things seniors can do to slow its onset.

1. Consume Red, Yellow, and Orange Vegetables

Eating red, yellow, and orange vegetables boosts health and may prevent or delay the symptoms of ALS. Bell peppers, carrots, tomatoes, and other colorful vegetables are rich in carotenoids, which stave off cognitive decline and neurodegenerative disorders.

If you have a senior loved one who needs help maintaining a high quality of life while aging in place, reach out to Home Care Assistance, an in-home care provider Victoria families can rely on. All of our caregivers are bonded, licensed, and insured, there are no hidden fees, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts. 

2. Eat More Greens 

Leafy greens such as spinach contain carotene and lutein, which delay the onset of ALS. Smoothies are a simple way to help your elderly loved one add a serving of leafy greens to his or her diet. Just mix spinach with yogurt and fruits in the blender to make a nutrient-packed drink for your loved one.

3. Increase Vitamin E Intake

Vitamin E reduces oxidative stress and helps keep ALS at bay. Nuts, salmon, and sardines contain high amounts of vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids. Just one serving of almond milk can provide a full day’s supply of essential vitamins for most seniors. 

4. Get Regular Exercise

When combined with a healthy diet rich in antioxidants, exercise can reduce the risk of Lou Gehrig’s disease. Gentle exercises such as swimming, gardening, and yoga can help seniors stay in shape and prevent ALS. Seniors should aim for at least thirty minutes of exercise at least three times a week to reduce the risk of ALS. Older adults with limited mobility may need professional caregivers to assist them with exercise.

If you are the primary caregiver for a senior family member and you need respite care, Victoria, British Columbia, Home Care Assistance is here to help. Our respite caregivers are trained to assist older adults with a wide variety of everyday tasks, including meal prep, physical activity, and personal hygiene. We also provide 24-hour care and specialized care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s.  

5. Know the Risk Factors

About 10 percent of people diagnosed with Lou Gehrig’s disease are genetically predisposed to develop this condition, and genetic testing can determine whether your loved one is at risk of ALS. Other risk factors for Lou Gehrig’s disease include physical trauma such as injuries and exposure to environmental toxins. 

Your loved one can talk to the doctor to determine his or her risk of developing Lou Gehrig’s disease. The doctor can also provide information on identifying early symptoms and preventing or delaying the onset of ALS.

6. Receive Early Treatment

Although ALS isn’t always preventable, early treatment can help slow the disease’s progression. Treatment options for ALS include taking prescription medications and engaging in physical therapy, assistive treatments, and speech therapy. Assistive treatments are usually provided during the later stages of the disease, but they may be provided earlier to promote a healthier prognosis. With early treatment, more invasive treatments and therapies can be delayed. 

Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Victoria, British Columbia, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s. Call one of our professional Care Managers at (250) 592-4881 and create a comprehensive home care plan for your elderly loved one.

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