Senior Care in Cary NC
It is common knowledge that a healthy diet promotes health and longevity. Why is it so hard, then, to incorporate healthy eating habits into our daily life? Emotions play a large part in that quandary. The desire for food can be a response to stress instead of hunger or to an emotional trigger from childhood. Sometimes it can act as a distraction to the larger life issues that need to be addressed. Keeping the benefits of a healthy diet in mind and addressing the issues that has one reaching for that gallon of ice cream can help guarantee success in the quest for a healthy lifestyle.
Benefits of The Mediterranean Diet for Your Aging Parent and You
Research has shown that the Mediterranean Diet decreases the chance of heart disease and lowers LDL, the bad cholesterol that leads to atherosclerosis. It is also associated with a reduced risk of dementia as well as certain cancers. It promotes foods high in omega-3 fatty acids, important nutrients that benefit joints, eyes, brains, hearts, and reduces anxiety.
A study performed by the Mayo Foundation after World War II had startling results. The diets of 13,000 men from the United States, Japan, Italy, Greece, Finland and Yugoslavia were examined. Americans were found to have the highest rates of heart disease while those from the poorer nation of Greece, more specifically Crete, had the best. The Mediterranean Diet is based upon the food intake of this culture.
More than Food
The Mediterranean diet involves more than the types of food consumed. It is also about a lifestyle that incorporates sharing meals in a leisurely fashion and exercising on a daily basis
It’s always best to ease changes into your elderly parent’s lifestyle. If they have spent much of their life gulping processed food down, introduce dietary changes slowly. The basics of this diet consists of a majority of fruits and vegetables—nine servings a day—plus whole grains, nuts, beans and some meat, a majority of which is fish followed by chicken. Red meat is limited to a few times a month. Substitute unhealthy fats for heart-healthy extra-virgin olive oil. And don’t forget the garlic.
Start by adding servings of fruits and vegetables to your parent’s diet. Vegetable soup is a great tasting way to increase vegetables. Starting the day with a fruit smoothie or a whole-grain cereal topped with berries is a good way to introduce more fruit. If fish has never been a dietary staple, start with increasing the amount of chicken. Add it to stir-fried vegetable dishes and salads. Halibut and cod are fish that fall on the less “fishy” side. Make a sandwich on whole-grain bread with tomatoes, cucumbers, garlic, and feta cheese and they may not even know they are eating fish.
Senior Care Provider
If you find it difficult to prepare a Mediterranean style menu or fit in leisurely, shared meals, consider obtaining the services of a senor care provider. These professionals can assist with the daily activities of living, leaving you more quality time to spend with your parent. They can also prepare healthy meals and enjoy them with your parent so you can spend a few days a week taking care of yourself.
If you or an aging loved one are considering senior care in Cary, NC or the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at HomeChoice Home Care Services. Call today (919) 847-5622