How to Reduce Fall Risk in the Elderly through Carotenoid Supplementation

How to Reduce Fall Risk in the Elderly Through Carotenoid Supplementation

July 23, 2020

Nathan Clinton-Barnett OTD, MSOT, OTRL

Nathan R. Clinton-Barnett OTD, MSOT, OTRL is the Executive Vice President of SAFE BALANCE, a comprehensive fall prevention system for healthcare systems and providers utilizing a multifactorial assessment-to-intervention process. An Occupational Therapist by trade, Nathan holds a Master’s Degree in OT (MSOT) from SVSU and a Clinical Doctorate in OT (OTD) from Chatham University.

How To Reduce Fall Risk In The Elderly Through Carotenoid Supplementation

Falls in the elderly population remain one of the fastest growing epidemics we face today. In fact, the CDC has identified that approximately 1 in 3 adults aged 65 and older will experience a fall over the next year costing the US healthcare system approximately $50 Billion. Additionally, one of the most common injuries sustained in this demographic is traumatic brain injuries and hip fractures leading to permanent functional decline/cognitive impairment.

The Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services, in an effort to provide optimal quality thresholds for medical providers, utilizes the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (or MIPS). In MIPS 154 in particular, areas of high fall risk are identified for the provider to measure and mitigate. One of these high-risk areas is cognition and cognitive functioning.

With the presence of Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) or dementia amongst the elderly, an already high fall rate increases 3-fold leading to the onset of musculoskeletal injuries, loss of function, and further exacerbation of disease pathology. While other areas of risk in the non-AD population are mitigated with resounding success using traditional evidence-based strategies (exercise, education, and compensation), these traditional approaches without directly targeting the improvement of cognitive functions in the AD population are less likely to be effective [1].

While improving strength and balance performance is still critical to offsetting fall risk, introducing a means of targeting cognitive function/decline through supplementation should be strongly considered as a viable means to prevent falls in the cognitively impacted senior population. Nutrients known as Carotenoids [active ingredients in the Memory Health® brain supplement] demonstrate the ability to maintain and optimize cognitive ability while offsetting the impairments associated with decreased motor planning/control seen in seniors with dementia and Alzheimer's disease.  To learn more about the clinically proven benefits of carotenoid supplementation on cognition, check out the following brain blogs:

  1. Food For Thought: How Diet and Supplementation Can Help Fight Dementia
  2. Targeted Nutrition for Eye an Brain Health: Is a Healthy Diet Enough?
  3. Carotenoids and Cognition: A Summary of the Evidence

There is no time that is “too early” to begin this regimen of fortifying brain health in a preventative manner. Even if a person doesn’t appear to be at an increased risk of fall or has never experienced a fall previously, those risks can present themselves suddenly and without warning at future times. The success of preventing future falls relies on putting as many risk modifications in place as soon as possible. The Memory Health® supplement remains a viable solution to achieve that optimization when facing increased fall risk relating to cognitive dysfunction.  

Almost everyone has experienced or knows someone who has experienced the catastrophic and often permanent injuries sustained from a fall. By fortifying brain health through supplementation in addition to the traditional multifactorial intervention pathway, a previously difficult outcome in reducing falls in the cognitively impaired population becomes easier to attain. I recommend utilizing the Memory Health® brain supplement as a means to directly target cognitive function related to offsetting fall risk as a safe and viable solution to this rising epidemic.


Citation: 

[1] The Role of Higher-Level Cognitive Function in Gait: Executive Dysfunction Contributes to Fall Risk in Alzheimer’s Disease, 2007



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