A man named Mark Hatzer noticed his mom’s forgetfulness and he was forced to admit her in hospital for her safety.
His mother was not even able to recognize him and once she accused nurses kidnapping her.
“When my mom was in the hospital she thought it was a hotel but the worst one she had ever been in,” Mark explained. “She didn’t recognize me and phoned the police as she thought she’d been kidnapped.”
“We were a double act that went everywhere together,” he said. “I despaired and never felt so alone as I had no other family to turn to. Overnight we went from a happy family to one in crisis.”
Mark worked on his mother’s diet and recipes to fight the rapid onset of dementia. After researching, the duo found out that due to diet, dementia is nearly unheard in many Mediterranean countries.
The foods in her diet were made up of plenty of “brain-boosting” foods including walnuts and blueberries.
“Everyone knows about fish but there is also blueberries, strawberries, Brazil nuts and walnuts — these are apparently shaped like a brain to give us a sign that they are good for the brain,” Mark explained.
His mother Sylvia started eating other foods like broccoli, oats, sweet potatoes, green tea, and even dark chocolate.
And the miracle happened as she started to regain pieces of her memory.
“It wasn’t an overnight miracle but after a couple of months she began remembering things like birthdays and was becoming her old self again, more alert, more engaged,” he explained.
“People think that once you get a diagnosis your life is at an end,” Mark said. “You will have good and bad days but it doesn’t have to be the end.”
Sylvia has been invited to one of Queen Elizabeth’s famed garden parties in summer 2018. She was honored for her efforts to help others affected by dementia.
“For my mom, knowing that she has helped other people, has really helped her,” Mark said.
“I did this for my mom — she has got the condition and she has done all the hard work — but if what we’ve achieved can benefit other people as well then that’s great.”
The Alzheimer’s Society has since sharing their diet, recipes and exercises on their blog.
“It’s fantastic that Sylvia along with her son Mark has taken action to create a personal plan that works well for her dementia diagnosis,” said Sue Clarke from the Alzheimer’s Society.
“There is currently no cure or way of preventing the progression of the condition, but taking regular gentle exercise, eating a healthy diet and doing cognitive exercises can help someone with dementia manage their condition more effectively.”