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My mother age 85 refuses to fix healthy meals for herself and my father who is starting chemo. They have always eaten a lot of fat and carbs and mom is a diabetic. Breakfast is usually a sweet roll, lunch is a hotdog or pizza or fast food hamburger. Dinner is usually better but very little veggies. I fully understand that she may be tired of cooking but she always has the energy to go to the casinos for gambling and dinner. I've been reading about the importance of healthy eating while undergoing chemo and have tried to talk to them about this on several occasions. I've even suggested that we seek help from a registered dietition. I think dad would agree to a better eating plan but mom steps in and will have nothing to do with it and he goes along with her. As with many people of that generation, Dad provided a living while Mom stayed home with the kids, cooked and cleaned.Dad has never cooked a meal and now he is sick and needs someone to step up and cook really healthy meals. I would gladly do this for him but I know Mom would throw a fit and most likely throw the food out. This would create a lot of hard feeling all the way around. They could afford to hire someone to cook and deliver meals but she would not be happy with this either. She is being very unreasonable and stubborn. She has a little confusion and forgetfulness occasionally but capable of cooking. I am very upset over this and feel it is causing unnecessary stress on all of us. This is the last thing we need. I only want the best for both of them. I feel it is absolutely important that Dad eat right to get thru this chemo. Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

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Zebawood, I don't believe your Mom is being unreasonable and stubborn, when you get to your Mom's age, you don't want to learn new things to cook, it is too overwhelming. If she was 25 years younger then maybe she would have an interest. Healthy diet for someone with cancer would be macrobiotic diet of all organic foods, no meat products, brown rice, plus seaweed and Miso soup [both a required taste], etc.

I've mentioned organic foods to my Mom [in her 90's] a few years ago but she turned up her nose, just the word itself made her not even want to know anything about it... even when I told her that is how her own mother use to cook, I still couldn't sway her to that side of the grocery aisle. Then I thought, she and Dad are in their 90's so they must have been doing something right all these years... even with Dad having cancer 20 some years ago.

You mentioned your Mom has the energy to go to the casinos, but is she doing that every single day? The casinos are her outlet, and it is great that she is able to get out and enjoy some times for herself. Those days will number down within the next couple of years as she gets older.
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Gee Pam, I think you nailed it. It's their lives and how they are living now, is usually an extension of how they have always lived. I know it was that way with my folks. Realizing our parents realities of life is not always easy to understand and accept.
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Never get between a husband and wife. You will lose. Let them be. These are their final moments together and they can squander them however they choose, with love.
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I had a similar problem with my parents. My dad never cooked when he was younger, and my mother even pulled out his clothing to wear. As they got older, it was disappointing to see how much it appeared that my mother didn't see to care whether he ate or not. He drink alcohol and I think my mother encouraged it so he would just go to sleep in the evenings. I know it was hard over the years with that alcohol issue, but my mother grew very lazy. She was a type 2 diabetic and they both ate anything in that crinkly plastic. Cupcakes, pies, ice cream...you name it, they ate it. They ate like 12 year olds. I began to create casseroles and set up nights that my husband and I would bring supper and we tried to be very upbeat and happy. My father, who normally would not eat any type of casserole, began to look forward to the visits. I eventually realized that I was not going to change them and I did my best to get them to eat better and I think it was the best that could have been done. My father passed away, and my mother is now with my husband and I. She has never seen so many vegetables and sweets are almost extinct now. Back in their own home, there was not much I could do, but the tide turned and my mother's in my home now and her diabetes is pretty regulated, and I think she is down 60 pounds. I think older people begin to tire of it all and begin to eat what is fast and easy. If you can get one or two meals in them that include good proteins and veggies, it is probably still a good thing. I also began making little sandwiches of ham and chicken salad, wrapping them up in plastic and setting them in the fridge. It seemed like those little plastic parcels went fast and I think my dad really appreciated it. And one thing that I am not sure about other parents, but my mother seemed like she resented my dad after a while. She did not want to dote on him because she was harboring resentment from their past life experiences. It sure looked vindictive to me at times ("You know your father, such a lazy man. He never cooked for me, not one minute you know"...., and in reality, she was probably suffering from all the same things my father suffered from too.
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