Proper nutrition is important to keep the body strong and healthy. For a person with Alzheimer’s or dementia, poor nutrition may increase behavioral symptoms and cause weight loss.
The basic nutrition tips below can help boost the person with dementia’s health and your health as a caregiver, too.
People with Alzheimer’s or dementia do not need a special diet. As with anyone, eating a well-balanced, nutritious diet is important for overall health.
As the disease progresses, loss of appetite and weight loss may become concerns. In such cases, the doctor may suggest supplements between meals to add calories.
Staying hydrated may be a problem as well. Encourage fluids by offering small cups of water or other liquids throughout the day or foods with high water content, such as fruit, soups, milkshakes and smoothies.
During the middle and late stages of Alzheimer’s, distractions, too many choices, and changes in perception, taste and smell can make eating more difficult. The following tips can help:
There are many questions you’ll need to answer as you plan for the future. A great options is using the Alzheimer’s Association Navigator — their free online tool — to guide you as you map out your plan.