Families providing Naples at-home care need to pay close attention to their elderly loved ones’ health to reduce the risk of developing certain conditions, some of which they might even be unfamiliar with. Dyslipidemia is a perfect example of a condition more family caregivers need to be aware of, and it is also easily preventable if you and your loved one make the right decisions. Below is some information on dyslipidemia and 4 lifestyle changes your loved one can make to prevent the disease.
What Is Dyslipidemia?
Dyslipidemia occurs when the blood contains an abnormal amount of fats known as lipids. The most common lipids measured in the blood include triglycerides, cholesterol, and low-density or high-density lipoproteins. In a person with dyslipidemia, the levels of one or more of these lipids are too high or too low. Excess levels of certain lipids can increase the risk of cardiovascular disease, heart attack, and stroke.
Lifestyle Changes Your Loved One Can Make
1. Eat a Heart-Healthy Diet
According to the American Heart Association, a diet focused on vegetables, fruits, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy can lower cholesterol levels. Red meat, sugary foods and beverages, and alcoholic drinks are linked to increased bad cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Examples of diets known to lower cholesterol levels include the Mediterranean diet and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension, also known as the DASH eating plan.
2. Exercise More
Physical activity is one of the best ways to maintain balanced lipid levels and prevent cardiovascular disease. As little as 40 minutes of exercise 3 to 4 times a week can lower bad cholesterol and increase good cholesterol levels. Walking, low-impact aerobics, and dancing are all excellent senior-friendly exercises.
3. Eat More Fiber
Diets high in soluble fiber have been shown to lower total and LDL cholesterol levels. Seniors should aim for 5 servings of fruits and vegetables and 6 servings of grains a day. A high-fiber, low-fat diet may also provide better blood sugar control, promote a healthier weight, and possibly prevent diverticular disease and colorectal cancer.
4. Consume More Antioxidants
The oxidation of LDL cholesterol and the buildup of plaque on artery walls can lead to atherosclerosis. Vitamins C and E and beta-carotene all have antioxidant properties that can prevent or slow this process. You can help your loved one increase his or her intake of antioxidants by encouraging him or her to eat more yellow or dark green vegetables and fruits.
Because a healthy diet and regular exercise are the most important factors in preventing dyslipidemia, make sure they are a part of your loved one’s daily routine. If he or she needs help maintaining these habits, turn to Home Care Assistance. Our caregivers can help with cooking, assist with mobility, and help with many other tasks. We also offer comprehensive dementia, Parkinson’s, and stroke care Naples seniors can count on. For more information on our senior care services, call one of our experienced Client Care Managers at (239) 449-4701 to schedule a free in-home consultation.