According to the Centers for Disease Control and the World Health Organization, heart disease is the leading cause of death throughout the world, and this condition is extremely common among the elderly. While some risk factors are completely out of an individual’s control, there are a few steps seniors can take to strengthen their cardiovascular systems and greatly reduce their risk of developing this pervasive disease.
1. Be Active Every Day
Many seniors become sedentary as they grow older, which can have a major impact on their health. Exercising for just a few minutes a day is one of the best ways to strengthen the entire cardiovascular system. While lifting weights and jogging are both great options, seniors can benefit from almost any type of activity that’s physically strenuous, including dancing, gardening, taking walks, and doing chores around the house.
If you usually help your loved one exercise but need a break now and then, consider having a professional caregiver take over for you. Mesa respite care professionals can assist seniors with a wide array of daily tasks, offering family caregivers the chance to focus on other personal responsibilities or take a break to prevent burnout. Whether it’s for a few hours a day or a few days a week, respite care is the perfect solution for family caregivers who are feeling overwhelmed.
2. Quit Smoking
It should come as no surprise that smoking cigarettes is one of the worst things anyone can do for their health. In addition to causing serious respiratory problems, the habit can also weaken the heart. Older adults who are still using tobacco products should speak with a doctor about their options for quitting. Nicotine replacement therapy has become extremely popular over the last few years, and quitting tobacco products is easier than ever. With the right nicotine replacement products and plenty of support, anyone can quit.
3. Follow a Healthy Diet
Diet is the foundation of a senior’s health, which is why all older adults must be very careful about what they eat. Filling up on saturated fats and processed sugars can greatly increase the risk of several health complications, including heart disease. Seniors who want to remain as healthy as possible should stick to nutrient-dense foods filled with a variety of vitamins and minerals. Aging adults must also avoid highly processed foods that could wreak havoc on their blood sugar and cholesterol levels.
A professional caregiver with training in nutrition and healthy lifestyle practices can be a wonderful source of information and encouragement. Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust Mesa in-home care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life.
4. Lose a Few Pounds
Staying at a healthy weight is another important step in this process, and losing just a few pounds could have a profound impact on a senior’s health. Exercising and eating nutrient-dense foods are both important steps, but older adults must consider how many calories they’re eating as well. Seniors can follow a healthy diet and still gain weight if they’re eating too many calories each day. Those who are having difficulty losing weight should speak with registered dietitians about coming up with healthy meal plans.
5. Control Chronic Health Conditions
Health complications such as high blood pressure and diabetes can negatively impact the cardiovascular system, which is just one of the many reasons those conditions need to be treated right away. While lifestyle changes are a great start, some seniors require prescription medications as well. If your loved one has been prescribed medicine to combat a health complication, make sure he or she takes the proper doses every day.
A professional caregiver can provide additional support for your efforts to help your loved one adopt a heart-healthy lifestyle. Reach out to us at Home Care Assistance if you need compassionate, professional care for your loved one. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of home care. You can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s 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. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (480) 699-4899.