Omega-3 fatty acids can be found in a variety of foods, including walnuts, fish, beans, and supplements. It’s an essential nutrient that many family caregivers give to their senior loved ones. Following are six reasons why.
1. Promotes Heart Health
Omega-3 fatty acids benefit the heart in many ways. They can prevent irregular heartbeats while decreasing the risk of blood clotting and fatty plaques forming inside the artery walls. They’re also known to reduce the chances of sudden death from a heart attack, according to Dr. Penny M. Kris-Etherton, a nutritionist from Pennsylvania State University.
If your loved one already has cardiovascular issues such as heart disease or a history of strokes, maintaining a healthy diet is even more important. Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Mesa, Arizona, family caregivers who need a break from their caregiving duties can turn to Home Care Assistance. Using our proprietary Balanced Care Method, our respite caregivers can encourage your loved one to eat well, exercise regularly, get plenty of mental and social stimulation, and focus on other lifestyle factors that promote longevity.
2. Delays the Onset of Alzheimer’s
Taking fish oil supplements may delay or slow the progression of Alzheimer’s and other dementia-related diseases, according to a 2010 article featured in The Journal of Nutrition. Omega-3 fatty acids found in fish oil supplements may therefore delay the need for Alzheimer’s care.
3. Relieves Arthritis Symptoms
Seniors with rheumatoid arthritis who take omega-3 supplements or get more of these fatty acids from their diet often experience less muscle stiffness and joint pain. Omega-3 fatty acids won’t stop the progression of arthritis, but it can alleviate the symptoms your loved one is experiencing, which could make performing daily activities more bearable.
Whether they’re consumed in food or taken as supplements, omega-3 fatty acids are part of a healthy diet, but some seniors may need help managing proper nutrition on their own. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional at-home care. Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.
4. Prevents Eye Disease
Taking omega-3 fatty acids could save your loved one’s eyesight. Macular degeneration is an age-related eye condition that can cause blindness over time. A study published by the U.S. National Library of Medicine indicated that older adults who incorporated more fish and omega-3 fatty acids into their diet were less likely to get macular degeneration than those who didn’t eat them.
5. Fights Diabetes
Seniors with diabetes will most likely have elevated triglyceride and low HDL levels. Omega-3 fatty acids could help your loved one lower his or her triglyceride levels, raise HDL levels, and reduce apoproteins, which are markers for diabetes. Based on a study conducted by researchers from Harvard Medical School, eating more foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids or taking supplements may prevent diabetes.
6. Staves Off Depression
Your loved one may experience sadness that spirals into depression due to illness and life changes. According to the Mayo Clinic, getting more omega-3 fatty acids and taking prescribed antidepressants may give seniors an extra boost to fight off depression and anxiety.
It can be challenging to prepare healthy meals for seniors, but a professional caregiver can help your loved one maintain a nutritious diet. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elderly home care. Mesa Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives. To hire a professionally trained caregiver for your loved one, call us at (480) 699-4899 today.