7 Healthiest Foods to Eat in the Senior Years

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Healthy Foods for Aging Adults in Rhode Island

Many seniors face eating issues due to a decrease in taste and smell, dental disorders, and side effects from medications. These problems may lead to your senior loved one not eating very much, which means the foods he or she does eat need to be full of nutrition and health benefits. Encourage your loved one to eat these foods for maximum health. 

1. Yogurt

Yogurt is the perfect breakfast or snack option for seniors. One cup of yogurt contains 50 percent of the recommended daily value of calcium, which keeps bones strong. Additionally, yogurt contains vitamin B12, phosphorus, and magnesium, and it’s also high in probiotics, which may keep your loved one’s bowels regular and boost his or her immune system.

2. Oatmeal

High cholesterol can increase the risk of heart attack and stroke. Help your loved one maintain lower cholesterol with a warm bowl of oatmeal for breakfast. One bowl of oatmeal contains two grams of soluble fiber, which has been found to lower LDL cholesterol levels. One study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that eating oatmeal daily lowered cholesterol levels as much as cholesterol-reducing drugs. 

A professional caregiver can be a wonderful source of support and information when it comes to getting proper nutrition. Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them attain this goal. Families can trust senior home care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living longer and healthier lives.

3. Tuna

Tuna is a cost-effective way to get a boost of omega-3 fatty acids, which can enhance the cardiovascular system by reducing inflammation, decreasing irregular heart rhythm, and maintaining healthy cholesterol levels. Additionally, omega-3 fatty acids may also prevent macular degeneration and boost cognition. Encourage your loved one to eat two servings of tuna a week in sandwiches or salads. 

4. Berries

Raspberries, blueberries, and strawberries are refreshing fruits that are full of antioxidants, which reduce damage from free radicals. Free radicals cause damage to cells that could lead to heart disease, cognitive decline, rheumatoid arthritis, and cataracts. Add berries to salads or cereal, or serve them on their own with a little whipped cream for a healthy dessert.

5. Beans

Eating beans is a great way to get a boost of fiber and keep the brain healthy. Beans and other legumes contain high amounts of choline, a type of B vitamin. Choline helps in the formation of acetylcholine, which is a neurotransmitter responsible for relaying information in the brain, and it can reduce the risk of dementia and Alzheimer’s. 

Family caregivers need to pay attention to their health needs too, and that involves self-care and taking time to nurture their own wellbeing. Whether you need respite from your caregiving duties or your aging loved one needs live-in care, Rhode Island Home Care Assistance can meet your family’s care needs. Our dedicated caregivers are available around the clock to provide transportation to doctor’s appointments, ensure seniors take their prescribed medications, and help with a variety of tasks in and outside the home.

6. Sweet Potatoes

If your loved one is watching his or her blood sugar levels, sweet potatoes are a great carbohydrate option. Sweet potatoes are lower on the glycemic index than regular potatoes and can keep blood sugar levels stable. One sweet potato also contains 369 percent of the daily recommended value of vitamin A, which keeps the eyes, skin, and immune system healthy. 

7. Cottage Cheese

Many seniors have a difficult time eating meat due to dental issues. Cottage cheese is rich in protein and calcium and can help seniors maintain lean muscles. Pair cottage cheese with fruit for a well-rounded snack that’s both sweet and savory. 

A trained professional caregiver can be an ideal resource when you’re trying to help your senior loved one lead a healthier lifestyle. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of at-home care. Rhode Island families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet their elderly loved ones’ unique care needs. Our holistic Balanced Care Method was designed to help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and our Cognitive Therapeutics Method offers mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia. If your loved one needs help with the challenges of aging, call one of our compassionate Care Managers today at (401) 284-0979.

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