This is the final post about taking care of the elderly and about Alzheimer’s Disease. This post is about serving healthy, nutritious and easy-to-digest food for the elderly. They are not spicy, too. These were the food that I prepared for my parents while I was at my sister’s place. Mom and dad really liked them. These were some of the food that mom often cooked for us when we were still at home and mom was still healthy with good memory. These food are light and low in fat, yet very nutritious. They are cooked longer so that it’s easy to digest.
As mentioned in my earlier post, Alzheimer’s Disease is a very cruel disease. A person suffering from Alzheimer’s may look normal like any other people but incapable of doing many things due to gradual memory lost even to the point of not remembering loved ones. Cooking is just out of the question. When mom was beginning to show symptoms of Alzheimer’s, she often forgot to turn off the gas stove. It frightened dad many times. She was finally banned from the cooking area!
Alzheimer’s Disease has no respect of person and there is so far no cure for it. Even Former US President, Ronald Reagan and many other famous people suffered from it. Alzheimer’s Disease is on a sharp rise and reaching an almost epidemic level in some countries. I believe it’s very important to be informed. Dr Mercola has a very informative post about it on his site which I just read a few days ago. It came on just at the right time. Click on The Best Kept Secret For Avoiding Alzheimer’s…..
Continuing from my previous post, I mentioned about my utter joy in taking my parents to my sister’s place in another town. But then I need to influence them to stay. I want them to take my sister’s place as their new home. If I can win over mom, dad will stay. That looks tough. So I planned out interesting things each day. I only concentrated on the animals and food because that’s what keep conversations going and mom can be involved and would love it. I cooked quite a few dishes there with mom’s help.
Food for the elderly must not be too oily, too salty, too hard, too spicy or too sweet. I didn’t make anything spicy at all. Here are what I cooked:
Vegetarian Dumplings In Chicken Soup
The filling consisted of big onions, coriander, eggs, carrots and tofu. They were pan fried with garlic, lightly seasoned with salt. It can even be eaten as it is. They are mixed up and used as filling for the dumplings.
These dumplings are not difficult to make. My parents like to eat them. You can go wild with the filling. It’s a great way to hide vegetables. This is a very healthy meal for the elderly as the chicken soup (from free range organic chicken) is very nutritious itself, made even more nutritious with all the carrots, red dates and wolf berries which are rich in Vitamin A and good for their skin and eyes. The dumpling skin is chewy and delicious. But for the elderly, I rolled out the skin thinner and cooked it longer so that it is softer and not so chewy. To make these dumplings, you can check out my previous posts by clicking on the following posts. You can change the filling.
Simple, Easy Chinese Dumplings To Make At Home (Part 1)
Simple, Easy Chinese Dumplings To Make at Home (Part 2)
Simple, Easy Chinese Dumplings To Make At Home (Part 3)
These fresh homemade/handmade noodles, also called hand-pulled noodles or ramen, are chewy and very delicious. Cook it longer if it is for the elderly, whether in soup or fried. To learn how to make handmade, hand-pulled or egg noodles, you can click on the following:
Making Hand-pulled Noodles
How To Make Egg Noodles At Home
I also used the hand-pulled noodles to make this vegetarian fried noodles. I only fried it with eggs and a lot of green leafy vegetables. Everyone liked it very much.
I really like fish cooked with bean paste. Freshly made ramen topped with this fish, the sauce and some stir fried green leafy vegetables is a very delightful meal in a plate. We enjoyed it very much.
Other noodles suitable for the elderly are:
Rice Noodles In Turkey Soup
Dry Noodles With Char Siu Chicken And Vegetables
Fish Ball Noodle Soup
Boiled Chicken And Vegetables Noodle Soup
Chinese Birthday With Longevity Noodles
Noodle Soup And Fried Noodles from Homemade Egg Noodles
I don’t know the name of this vegetable. My parents used to plant them when we were young. We always used it to cook fish. It’s a long time I had not eaten this fish dish. It was a must to try when I saw the vegetable.
This fish with sour vegetable is very appetising. The soup is slightly sourish and goes very well with rice. We ate fish everyday because my brother-in-law loves fishing and the freezer is full of fish.
This is another dish which is my parent’s favourite…fish cooked in bean paste with lots of ginger and big onion. It’s also my favourite. There are quite a number of fish recipes in my Recipes section, under Seafood. I like salmon so there are a lot of salmon recipes. You can use other fish, too. A few of my best favourite ones that are not spicy are:
Salmon And Asparagus Stir Fry
Salmon And Rice Noodles Fry
Sweet And Sour Fish
This is dried fish bladder. It costs about RM450 (about 90 pounds) per kg! It is reputed to have curative power. I remember my mom used to say its good for backache. There are more health benefits but mom couldn’t remember.
I cut it up into smaller pieces and deep fried it. Then I added to chicken soup and cooked until it is soft. It is very delicious.
Sweet Purple Potato
I am so happy that at last I got to eat purple sweet potato! I was totally excited and happy when my sister bought these. See the beautiful bright colour, similar to blueberries and purple majesty potatoes. These are Okinawan Potatoes, also called Hawaiian Purple Sweet Potatoes. They are native to the Japanese native island, Okinawa.
These potatoes are highly nutritious and like the blueberries and purple majesty potatoes, they are loaded with antioxidants. Unlike other potatoes, they are even suitable for the diabetics. These Okinawan potatoes have even been used in Japan to treat diabetes and other diseases.
I baked them and also use them in rice porridge. It’s more dry when baked. I think it’s more delicious in rice porridge or made into desserts, or maybe boiled. Mom and dad liked it very much. We grew up eating lots of sweet potatoes. Mom and dad used to plant them when we were young. There were several types and all are very delicious.
Sweet potatoes are very nutritious and high in fibre. I have a whole section of sweet potato recipes in my Recipes. I know mom and dad would love these:
Sweet Potato Balls For Dessert
Sweet Potato Tortoise-shaped Chinese Dessert (Angku)
Sweet Potato Donuts
Sweet Potato Cake
Steamed Sweet Potato Jam Pudding
Condensed Milk Sweet Potato Cake
Sweet Potato Scones With Condensed Milk For Mother’s Day
Sweet Potato Carrot Cake
Sweet Potato And Chicken Stir Fry
Rice Porridge (Congee)
Rice porridge or congee is very easy to digest. My sister only eats this special brown rice which was grown locally. It tastes very delicious and has higher nutrients. Mom and dad love this type of rice.
I think rice porridge is quite like risotto but less creamy. Maybe I can call it Chinese risotto!
This rice porridge with lots of bitter leafy vegetable is my family favourite. I made the stock with lots of fried anchovies, big onions and garlic. Then add the rice. The vegetables were added later so that they don’t turn yellow. This is a very delicious porridge. We love it with lots of the vegetables.
I also cooked the rice porridge with the purple sweet potatoes. It gave the rice porridge beautiful colour and taste. That was my plate of porridge here. I was just very happy with some omelette and mixed vegetable. Of course there was always fish and chicken soup, too.
I also used the orange sweet potatoes and yam to add to the rice porridge. This is also very delicious. Mom and dad also liked it very much.
Other rice porridge (congee) suitable for the elderly are:
Best Turkey Rice Porridge
Meat Balls Rice Porridge
Salted Fish And Chicken Rice Porridge
Char Siu Chicken Rice Porridge
Rice Pancakes (Chee Cheong Fun Or Churng Fun)
Healthy Thunder Tea Rice (Lei Cha)
Gifts From Sister
When my trip came to an end and I had to return to cold Aberdeen, Scotland, my sister gave me a real big surprise. She gave me a beautifully knitted shawl and a very good quality wok. It took her 2 weeks to knit the shawl despite her very busy life. I love both gifts. I’m going to have more fun cooking. I really love my sister. She is always very motherly, loving and encouraging. I feel so pampered. I think I feel that I’m never grown up when I’m with her…haha.
What have I learned after my 2 weeks stay at home with my parents. I have not only learned so much about Alzheimer’s Disease and about taking care of my parents who are both 80 years old. I have learned the most important issue and essence of life…the beautiful tapestry of love and marriage until old age. Mom and dad live out the marriage vow in their life….“To love, to hold and to cherish, in sickness and in health, for better or for worse till death do us part.” On top of that, dad’s simple faith in God is just beautiful and inspiring. He prays early every morning for all his children and grandchildren. He always asks mom to pray along with him. Mom and dad have inspired me to enjoy a loving marriage and to set an example to our children, believing God to continue to bless my family and loved ones.
Dad has finally pulled through! He is off from the oxygen and drips. He is still very weak and needs to gain back strength slowly before being allowed home. Thanks very much to all who have been praying for him. God is good and He answers prayers. During this troubled time, I have been much encouraged by all the comments and emails. Thanks very much for what you have done! I’m going back again soon to see them.
It had been a tough couple of weeks. I was really concerned about dad’s condition. Adding on to that, my cousin brother passed away last week. It was devastating. He was only 32. He left behind a beautiful young daughter!
Life is very fragile. Let’s treasure our lives and treasure all those around us.
Quote of the day……
“It doesn’t matter who you are, where you come from. The ability to triumph begins with you. Always.”
Other articles related to taking care of the elderly:
There are a lot of recipes in my Recipes that are suitable for the elderly. Other good and healthy food for them are tofu, soup, fish, sweet potatoes, smoothies, juices and vegetables.