Following a heart-healthy diet can reduce a senior’s risk of a wide array of health complications, including coronary artery disease, heart attacks, arrhythmias, and high blood pressure. Many of the superfoods consumed in these diets can also strengthen the immune system and boost energy levels. Here is a look at six of the best diets for older adults who want to boost their heart health.
1. Flexitarian Diet
More than 10 years ago, a dietitian named Dawn Jackson Blatner started telling people they could enjoy the many benefits of a vegetarian diet without giving up meat entirely. The Flexitarian diet primarily revolves around plant proteins, but a few times a month it’s permissible to indulge in burgers, steaks, fish, and poultry. A 2014 study published in The Journal of Family Practice found that vegetarians are 40 percent less likely to develop heart disease.
If your loved one needs help maintaining healthy habits that promote better cardiovascular health, consider hiring a caregiver. For many seniors in Columbus, Ohio, live-in care is an essential component of aging in place safely and comfortably. However, it’s important for them to have caregivers they can trust and rely on. At Home Care Assistance, we extensively screen all of our live-in and 24-hour caregivers and only hire those who have experience in the senior home care industry. Our strict requirements ensure seniors can remain in the comfort of home with a reduced risk of injury or serious illness.
2. Ornish Diet
The primary goal of this diet is to reduce intake of saturated fat. Over the years, many studies have shown regularly consuming saturated fat is one of the leading risk factors for cardiovascular events like heart attacks. While on the Ornish diet, only 10 percent of a senior’s daily calories should come from fat of any type. Egg yolks, fatty meats, and other products that are high in cholesterol must be avoided entirely.
3. TLC Diet
The American Heart Association claims this diet is one of the best options for people who want to reduce their risk of heart disease. In addition to dietary changes, seniors who start the TLC program also need to exercise regularly and find ways to naturally manage their stress levels. Much like the Ornish diet, the TLC diet is designed to reduce intake of saturated fat and cholesterol and increase intake of high-fiber fruits, vegetables, and grains.
4. Mediterranean Diet
To this day, the Mediterranean diet is still considered to be one of the healthiest diets in the world. Many long-term studies have proven the Mediterranean diet can reduce blood pressure levels, regulate insulin levels, and promote brain health. This diet cuts out red meat, white sugar, simple carbohydrates, and all processed foods. Seniors who are on this diet are encouraged to eat plenty of seafood, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, poultry, and berries.
5. DASH Diet
Health specialists designed this diet to lower hypertension and boost cardiovascular health. Many people benefit from the DASH diet because it is relatively simple to follow. Your loved one can focus on healthy and whole foods like low-fat dairy, lean sources of protein, and leafy green vegetables. The specialists who back this diet have also suggested limiting salt, red meats, and white sugar.
If your busy schedule can’t accommodate extra attention to your aging loved one’s diet, consider hiring a professional caregiver. In Columbus, home care providers can benefit aging adults in a variety of ways. From cooking nutritious meals to offering timely medication reminders, the dedicated caregivers at Home Care Assistance are available to help your elderly loved one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
6. MIND Diet
The MIND diet is a variation of the Mediterranean diet, and it was created to enhance brain function as well as heart health. Instead of sticking to a rigid diet, seniors have the option of occasionally indulging in their favorite cheat meals. This diet also includes the option of having red wine three or four times a week. Red wine contains a flavonoid known as resveratrol, and studies have shown this substance boosts good cholesterol (HDL) levels while reducing bad cholesterol (LDL) levels.
Professional caregivers can help seniors maintain their heart health and stave off a number of health conditions. Get in touch with Home Care Assistance to find out how a Columbus, Ohio, elderly caregiver can help your aging loved one live a longer, healthier, and happier life. Our caregivers are available 24/7, all of our senior care services come with a 100% satisfaction guarantee, and we never ask our clients to sign long-term contracts. For more information and to schedule a complimentary consultation, please call one of our knowledgeable Client Care Managers at (614) 481-8888 today.