This section of my website is being dedicated to my parents.
They were the Great Americans that were born between World Wars, suffered thru a Great Depression, fought in the Second World War, saw penicillin and TV be discovered, sent their children to Viet Nam and died from chronic diseases like cancer and dementia.
My father, who grew up on an Indiana farm, lived through 7 major invasions in WWII. During his lifetime, he went from having cigarettes be a staple in war rations to undergoing major cardiac bypass surgery, developing COPD and dying in his 80's from lung cancer.
My mother was a high school graduate from the Boston area who married her war sweetheart, moved to the midwest and raised two children on Crisco, coca cola, spaghetti-O's, bread with butter and sugar; and if we were good, a candy bar at the end of a week. She died from Dementia.
When I brought her to my home after my father had died, she was down to #115 and my brother, who in his lifetime has topped #400, was feeding her chocolate covered peanut candies. Her dementia went over the edge when she called me one night in a fright that my dad had not come home. She had no recall that he had died 4 years earlier. In fact, as her dementia ebbed and waned, my dad disappeared from her memory and she told me toward the end of her life her name was Virginia Freeman. Virginia Schultz had disappeared. When asked about her greatest accomplishment in her life, she stated that graduating from High School was her greatest accomplishment. Life was also made difficult because during this final stay in my home she began to think I was her mother whom she was deathly afraid of because her mother use to beat her and her sister as children. My mother's brother did not suffer the same fate, so he lived until 94 with a stable memory.
Today we know not to smoke but we have not been very good about our diets. Fast foods, GMO's, chemicals to help preserve foods are everywhere. Antibiotics have been used so much that we now have strains of bacteria resistant to all antibiotics. If diabetes or cancer does not get you then around the corner are Alzheimer's, Dementia, Parkinson's, and MS.
Neurodegenerative diseases are turning out to be another presentation of Insulin Resistance and if we are to change their course, we need to eat differently. It seems our brains enjoy and prefer using ketones for energy production. Which means we need to be in ketosis to take advantage of slowing and perhaps even reversing brain degeneration. It takes time to learn how to eat keto; but, if we want to live into our elderhood with our brains intact, then we need to do it.
Being a physician, I get to live thru many patients' lives and one of the things I have learned, is that it is never too late to change. All diseases seem to have inflammation in common. Finding that "trigger" and stopping it can really improve one's life. We know diet and exercise controls health; thus we can address a lot of "health" concerns ourselves by eating right and exercising. But, what is right?
Do we continue to eat the Food Pyramid to the left which is the "Standard American Diet"? or
Do we do change and eat the Food Pyramid to the right which is the "Ketogenic Diet"?
I believe that answer will make itself clear as we move through our discussion of Dementia.
When you have the added task of caring for your parents, you need to know that even if you believe something, your parents probably won't. It is not worth the stress to get them to change. [You may have to sneak change in on them.] It is; however, more important that you change for your children. Remember, change is always possible at any age. So if your parents do believe, then go with it but don't fight them,,,just love them because today is tomorrow's yesterday and this too will pass.
I fell off my mother's grid early by eating a healthier lifestyle and not gaining weight; until I hit menopause. Food was not love to me. Becoming a physician and being a nurse first, then a DO, I learned early that there were different ways to approach your health. Today we know that simple food and exercise are 40 to 60 % of the contributors to health. My children have taken these points and run with them...literally. My eldest has been plagued with a bad gut from early infant ear infections, myringotomy tubes and antibiotics. I and my husband were young and that was what medicine did; today, not so much. My second daughter almost died from a sucrose allergy in her formula. I lost a baby from Trisomy X. My son has had a mild case of ADHD brought on, I think, from an amalgam filling I had to have replaced during my pregnancy with him. Nevertheless, because of my mind set, they all are into eating healthy, keeping their weight under control, and exercising; Erin lifts weights and has become a "biohacker", Kira is a runner and Toby mows his grass with a push mower (He could do a little more physical activity, but then, so could I.) Diet-wise Erin, Kira and Toby were into Keto way before I was; after all, they are young and have the internet.
Enough of why I am doing this and on to you and why you should do this too......