My Mom's Progress And Addition Information - Healthy Eating, Cooking, and Baking Blog at - 303367

Healthy Eating, Cooking, and Baking

My Mom's Progress and Addition Information 
May 27, 2013 12:31 am 
Updated: Jul. 4, 2013 6:08 am
It's been a while since my last post, so I thought I might share an update on my Mother and some more interesting information that I found.

This last we had another full blood panel done on my mother plus urine tests so the doctor would have the results of all the tests before our appointment this week. My husband took her to have the blood drawn, and when he got home, he handed me the container for urine. This brought back memories of when we had to get a urine sample from our 200 pound English Mastiff. This I thought was hysterical as my husband chased after the dog to get a urine sample as she was running in a stooped position. Well, I guess it was payback time!! I was pretty sure I wouldn't be able to explain to my mother she had to pee in a bottle when she doesn't always figure out where she has to wipe.  

I did figure out a way to get the sample. I cut a large piece of plastic wrap and put it across the toilet with the seat on top to hold it. I made sure that it was pushed down enough to create a sort of trough. So comes time to test this theory. I waited until she had to go to the bathroom, and fortunately she didn't stop to notice the plastic wrap. When she sat down, I didn't hear anything, and then she started to grunt. OH, NO!! Not that!! When she got up, I was so relieved to see that only urine was in the plastic wrap. So far, so good.

So my next problem was to get the plastic wrap off the toilet, and the urine into the jar (had only a 2 /12 inch opening) without making a yucky mess. I finally decided to pick up the plastic wrap from the toilet so the sample was in a bubble at the bottom, hold it over the bottle (cross my fingers), and cut a slit in the bottom of the bubble with a scissors. It worked!! We got the sample back to the lab. Hopefully, this experience helps someone that is faced with the same challenge.

This week we had the appointment with the doctor for an exam and to get the results of all the tests. Prior to this, I had started my mother on a B-12 supplement because supposedly the elderly don't absorb as much B-12 from foods, and a B12 deficiency can cause  problems with speech. In the nursing home, they were giving her a B12 injection, so I assumed she needed it. As it turned out, all of her blood work was perfect except the B12 level was too high. So I have stopped the B-12 supplement. Surprisingly, she is absorbing enough B12 from her diet that she doesn't need the supplement.

In talking to her doctor, he said that all of her blood work was perfect. After walking from the car to the doctor's office, I was sure that her blood pressure would be elevated, but it was 120/84. Her cholesterol was 172. All levels were in the middle of the normal levels. Keeping in mind that this is a person that had previously been on 3 high blood pressure meds and one for high cholesterol, and is now on none of these, I think the progress has been tremendous.

Again, the doctor told me that he has never seen such improvement in an elderly person in his entire career. I started to tell him the supplements we were giving her and what they were supposed to do, and all the time, the doctors just sat and smiled. I finally asked him why he was smiling, thinking that he thought what we were doing was silly or useless. He just said "Everyone should have someone like you taking care of them.". My way of thinking is that if what we are doing for my mother can encourage even one other family to help an elderly member of their family, my sharing my experience will be well worth the effort.

Now for the educational part of this post. Vitamin B-12 is found only in meats (especially organ meats), eggs, and fish. Vitamin B-12 plays a key role in the normal function of the brain and nervous system, and in the formulation of blood. As we age, we may be consuming sources of the vitamin, but we may not absorb it in sufficient quantities. In this case,  we may require a supplement that can be easily absorbed. Many doctors will prescribe injections but sublingual supplements can also be effective. Sublingual supplements are dissolve under the tongue for more immediate absorption into the blood stream. Unfortunately, the most common type of B12 in the United States is made from cyanocobalamin. This form of B12 has a base of cyanide. All B12 injections and all over the counter supplements contain cyanide. The safe form of B12 is made from methylcobalmin. The cyanocobalamin form of B12 has been found to be ineffective, and its use has been banned in the United Kingdom. Yet this is the form most commonly used in the United States. If you are taking a B12 supplement and it is the cyanide version, cyanocobalamin, it would be beneficial for you to dispose of it and get the methylcobalmin version. I have found this one on in the sublingual form.
May 27, 2013 8:35 am
You have done an amazing turn around for your Mom's health. I took care of my Mom for the last few years'a of her life-you will never regret it.
May 27, 2013 8:38 am
How wonderful that you are caring for your mom. I know how hard it is to care for your parents. You will know in your heart that you did the best you could.
May 27, 2013 1:28 pm
Your mother is so lucky to have you. You have made a huge improvement for her.
May 30, 2013 7:13 pm
God bless you for taking such wonderful care of your Mother. She is very lucky to have you!
Jun. 1, 2013 3:55 pm
Agree with the doc, everyone should have someone like you caring for them! Love the way you love your mom.
Jun. 3, 2013 12:35 am
I want to thank everyone for their comments and support. This experience has been both difficult and very rewarding. I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to give back to her some of the love and support that she gave me as a child. I am also hopeful that her positive progress will encourage others to try to help their elderly loved ones and to not commit them to nursing homes as long as there is hope for them to recover. I have seen life in a nursing home, and most of the residents in them have given up on life. They are literally just waiting to die.
Jul. 4, 2013 6:08 am
In case you have to get another urine sample, there is a device referred to as a "hat" which fits over the rim of the toilet bowl. You lower the toilet seat over the plastic "hat". The urine is caught in the bowl of the hat and you can easily pour out the urine from the rigid hat. The lab should have these available. There are many people who cannot pee in a vial. Good luck with your mom. I know from experience that you have to be a deligent advacate.
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About Me
I breed large parrots, like to write, raise most of our veggies, completed my AS degree at 65, enjoy cooking specialty dishes and baking bread. I have done extensive study of cooking and eating healthy. A few years ago, I started researching healthy eating for my parrots, and it has since changed focus to the diet of my family. At this point, I make all of our bread using fresh milled flour that I make. We eat primarily pastures fed meats and eggs, and I make many of our condiments. We also avoid GMO foods and ingredients as much as possible. Since my 93 year old mother has moved in with us, we have eliminated the 10 medications she was on, and her physical and mental condition has improved considerably. I totally believe that we are what we eat. What is really best for us is a constant learning experience.
My favorite things to cook
I get bored with cooking daily meals, but enjoy making specialty and new dishes. I also enjoy baking breads from scratch using freshly ground flour made from various grains that I buy in bulk.
My cooking triumphs
One of my cooking triumphs was baking whole grain breads that are light, tasty, and healthy.
My cooking tragedies
My latest cooking tragedy was recovered with some effort. I made the Navy Bean and Ham soup that I posted and after the cooking time, much of the liquid had evaporated. I was tired when it finished and put it into containers and froze it as it was. The next day we had it for dinner and it was way too thick. As much as I didn't feel like it, I thawed 8 containers of the soup, added more broth, and repackaged it for freezing. It was really a pain, but I'm glad I did it. The finished soup was so much better.
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