The Centers for Disease Control report that roughly 71 million Americans have elevated cholesterol levels, and seniors tend to be most at risk. An excess of cholesterol in the body can increase the chance of a heart attack or stroke. Though medication is often recommended, there are ways to reduce cholesterol naturally, enabling seniors to live longer and healthier lives.
According to the Mayo Clinic, even a few extra pounds can increase LDL cholesterol, and losing as little as five percent of body weight can help reduce bad cholesterol significantly. Encourage your senior loved one to incorporate physical activity as often as possible into their daily routine. If he or she has mobility concerns, find a part-time Las Vegas caregiver who can provide physical support during exercise.
Take Vitamin Supplements
Though research is ongoing, both fish oil and garlic show promise in lowering cholesterol levels. Consult a physician regarding possible side effects or interactions with current medications before including in a daily routine.
The Mayo Clinic also reports that an additional 5 to 10 grams of soluble fiber daily can lower bad cholesterol. Try serving up more oatmeal, carrots, barley, and citrus fruit each day. You can also try making veggie-based soups, casseroles, or even smoothies.
Good and bad cholesterol is affected by smoking and arteries may be damaged, resulting in blockages. Many hospitals, clinics, and insurance plans offer programs to help people quit smoking.
Even if your senior loved one doesn’t need to lose weight, any increase in physical activity will be beneficial to reducing cholesterol. Exercising at least 4 days a week for 30 minutes is recommended. For seniors, short walks at a comfortable pace can be ideal. You can also look at local community centers and senior centers for a list of activities specifically for elderly.
Limit Unhealthy Fats
Unhealthy fats will raise cholesterol levels. The American Heart Association advises seniors to limit saturated fats (meat, butter) to only seven percent of their diet. Trans fats (shortening, fried foods) should be limited to just one percent.
Are you interested in learning more about senior health and nutrition? Leading Las Vegas home care provider, Home Care Assistance, can help. Our caregivers are expertly trained to provide the best senior care possible, including grocery shopping and cooking healthy meals in accordance with your senior loved one’s dietary needs. Reach out to us at (702) 550-3185 and speak with a trusted Care Manager who can answer questions and schedule a free in-home consultation.