Here at Maplewood Senior Living, food is one of our priorities and for good reason. The research is clear when it comes to brain health; what you eat matters.
Reaping the Benefits of the MIND Diet
There’s a fundamental reason that we choose to work with local purveyors. At Maplewood Senior Living, our memory care focus means we follow the latest research in the field and incorporate whatever we can to improve our residents’ quality of life. One such study in the field of Alzheimer’s and dementia confirmed the vital role played by diet and nutrition, and introduced the MIND diet.
The MIND diet was developed by nutritional epidemiologist, Martha Clare Morris, at Rush University Medical Center through a study that was funded by the National Institute on Aging. MIND stands for Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay, and it has many similarities to the Mediterranean diet.
With the MIND diet as a guide to our Maplewood cuisine, we focus on the key tenets which include eating the following foods regularly:
- Green leafy vegetables in particular
- Berries, especially blueberries
- Whole grains
- Olive oil
By choosing local suppliers, we can ensure better quality, fewer preservatives, and therefore, more nutritious foods.
Morris’ study was conducted over a decade and included almost 1,000 senior participants. Those who strictly followed the MIND diet reduced their risk of developing Alzheimer’s by 53% and it helped 35% who only followed the diet moderately. These exciting results motivate us to provide the healthiest menu options possible for our residents. For those who are already facing Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. These rich foods may slow the progression of their disease.
Many of the items on the MIND diet are rich in antioxidants. Antioxidants are compounds that are found in your body, but also in some foods. They help to protect your body from harmful molecules, known as free radicals, which can accumulate and lead to oxidative stress. This increase in oxidative stress can raises the risk of several major diseases, including: Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers. Eating a diet rich in antioxidants also helps to reduce the risk of other chronic diseases.
Introducing Maplewood Senior Living’s Kale Salad…
A great example of taking what we know from the MIND diet, and building in fresh, flavorful ingredients to deliver our residents a wonderfully tasty, nutrition-packed creation.
Kale Salad Recipe
1 pkg. sweet kale salad mix
1 apple, diced
1 pear, diced
1 cup strawberries
3/4 cup pecan pieces, toasted
Place kale mix on salad plate. Arrange fruit on top kale and then sprinkle pecans over top. Makes 8 servings.
1 cup lemon juice
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Place dressing ingredients in the blender and mix. Drizzle over salad. Serves 8.
Maria Hollenberg, MA, RDN, LDN, Dietician, Maplewood Senior Living, has shared nutritional benefits of some of the ingredients of the Kale Salad, see below:
- Among the most nutrient-dense foods on the planet. …
- Loaded with powerful antioxidants like Quercetin and Kaempferol – substances that help counteract oxidative damage by free radicals in the body
- Is an excellent source of vitamin C & beta carotene as well as flavonoids and polyphenols
- Can help lower cholesterol, which may reduce the risk of heart disease and aid in lowering blood pressure
- Contains very little fat, but a large portion of the fat in it is an omega-3 fatty acid called alpha linolenic-acid.
Apples and Pears
- Contain vitamin C, which bolsters the immune system
- Lowers blood pressure
- Lowers of c-reactive protein (a marker of inflammation)
- Improves immune functioning – decreases oxidative stress
- Lowers blood pressure
- Treat symptoms of arthritis and gout
- Offer protection against cancer
- Promote healthy eye sight
- Regulates blood sugar
- Lowers risk of stroke
Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
- Protects memory and learning ability and reduces the formation of amyloid-beta plaques and neurofibrillary tangles in the brain — classic markers of Alzheimer’s disease.
- Is a great source of monounsaturated fatty acid and has shown to help reduce the risk of heart disease
- Excellent source of manganese, which helps metabolism function properly
- Provide high levels of monounsaturated fat, which is considered “good” fat, which may be helpful in lowering your LDL or “bad” cholesterol
At Maplewood Senior Living, we focus on working with local purveyors that can supply our communities with fresh, delicious ingredients year-round… here we highlight Green City Growers of Cleveland, Ohio & Red’s Best of Boston, Massachusetts…
Locally Sourced Partnerships
One such local partner is Green City Growers. This partner began their journey in 2008 when they created a coop that included the Cleveland Foundation, the Cleveland Clinic, University Hospitals, Case Western Reserve University, and the municipal government. Their mission was to create an economic breakthrough in the Cleveland area with a model that became so successful it soon drew global attention. This state of the art hydroponic greenhouse serves our Ohio communities, with their carefully grown nutrient-rich leafy greens and herbs. Beautiful bunches of mixed greens, butter lettuce, and Cleveland Crisp are delivered to our Maplewood Senior Living Communities on regular basis.
Conde Nast Traveler magazine ranks Red’s Best among the top 11 seafood restaurants in Boston. Headquartered on the historic Boston Fish Pier, Red’s Best was founded in 2008 to serve fishermen from local coastal communities in the USA. When a fisherman lands, Red’s Best takes possession of the entire catch, uploads all catch data, and maintains an unbroken chain of custody of the fish through processing, packaging, labeling, and shipping. This innovative technology and logistics platform reduces the distance between Maplewood Senior Living and the fisherman’s catch. We’re proud to say that we are serving the freshest fish and seafood available on the east coast to our Maplewood Senior Living residents. Sea scallops, oysters, yellowtail flounder, and redfish are just some of the delicacies our residents love from Red’s Best.
Why does choosing local matter?
When we choose fresh ingredients from local partners, we know that we’re choosing foods that don’t have to travel far. This means they’ll reach our communities with as few preservatives as possible. It also means we know where our food comes from and can share that with our residents.
When you step into a Maplewood community, you will feel and see the difference in everything we do. Choosing foods that offer our residents the best nutrition and dining experience is at the top of the list. To see for yourself, contact us today and plan your visit.