19 Aug How MemoryMeals™ helps to maintain brain health
MemoryMeals, as its name implies, is based around the use of carefully chosen nutrition options to help advance cognitive health. But it would be a mistake to pigeonhole MemoryMeals as simply a diet plan; instead, it’s a holistic program that promotes every aspect of a brain healthy lifestyle.
For example, in contrast to a traditional one-size-fits-all diet plan, MemoryMeals gives a food preparer the unsurpassed ability to personalize menus based on the needs of residents. Using a proprietary algorithm, the program helps optimize meal selections for optimum brain health, essentially keeping score of ingredients and alerting the chef when certain foods should be added or reduced. That includes suggestions on which recipes or food types could be added to a weekly menu to bring the desired nutritional needs into balance.
With the algorithm acting as a type of brain-health “cruise control” for meal planning, MemoryMeals allows a facility’s food service staff — or an individual caregiver at home — to continue to enjoy flexibility over meal choices, while staying confident that they are also adding the right type and amount of nutrients proven to benefit cognitive health.
The impact of MemoryMeals also extends beyond the dining hall. The program has an activity component to keep seniors engaged, entertained and committed to their progress.
As caregivers and other stakeholders add their ideas and input, the MemoryMeals experience is still evolving and taking shape. At present, the following initiatives are underway or in development:
- Educational programming to help seniors take ownership for their health by bringing them, in layman’s terms, the latest information on diet, exercise, lifestyle choices and other elements connected with maintaining optimum brain health. These information sessions, which could be delivered as videos, webinars, or through social media channels, will help create a cohort of MemoryMeals ambassadors inspired to spread brain healthy best practices to their peers — and even younger family members.
- Consumer version of MemoryMeals to carry the essentials of brain-healthy menu planning into the homes of caregivers, helping to engage a resident’s entire family in supporting and encouraging everything the program has to offer.
- Brain game activities, such as Food Fact Trivia for fun and prizes. This not only stimulates cognitive function, but also educates residents on the importance of nutrition while enhancing their social interaction.
- SmartHarvest gardening guides to help those with green thumbs add brain-healthy choices to their home gardens to augment menus with fresh, nutritious ingredients.
- MemoryMeals Speakers Bureau that lets subject matter experts on nutrition, lifestyle and cognitive science address seniors and caregivers on the latest developments in this growing field, either in person or by using virtual webinars.
Clearly, calling MemoryMeals a diet plan doesn’t begin to do it justice. The potential of this exciting program is continually being explored with every new day. And every new meal.