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Heart-Smart Foods for Your Elderly Loved One

By Jennifer Thompson, 9:00 am on

Heart disease and heart attacks are two of the leading health concerns for senior citizens. This is no surprise given that heart disease is currently the number one cause of death in the U.S. Luckily, along with visiting a doctor, exercising, and avoiding smoking, certain heart-healthy foods can also keep an individual’s heart in the healthiest condition possible. Nashville Home Care Assistance encourages you and your senior loved one to reach for the following items on your next grocery run.

Salmon

Salmon contains a large amount of omega-3 fatty acids. These acids help reduce plaque build up in the heart and can prevent arrhythmias. Other fatty fish such as mackerel and sardines contain the same omega-3 acids and are also good choices.

Blueberries

Those who like blueberries are in for a treat. Blueberries, strawberries, and other berries can reduce the risk of a heart attack by up to 32 percent. Not that you needed a good excuse to eat that piece of blueberry pie.

Dark Chocolate

Chocolate lovers will definitely enjoy this heart-healthy food option. Eating chocolate that contains 60 percent or more cocoa means you’ll also be consuming polyphenols that may help prevent blood clotting and reduce blood pressure

Potatoes

Many people avoid this starchy food, but as long as they aren’t deep fried, potatoes can be a great heart-healthy option. This is because they are high in potassium and fiber, both of which lower the risk of heart disease.

Nuts

Most nuts, such as pistachios, peanuts, macadamia nuts, almonds, and walnuts, are heart-healthy and contain the healthy fats people need in their diets. Nuts contain vitamin E that can lower cholesterol and the same omega-3 fatty acids as fish.

Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

In addition to adding a lot of flavor to healthy dressings and salads, olives and olive oil are a good source of healthy fats and oils that can help improve blood sugar levels and cholesterol.

Avocados

These yummy fruits have a good reputation as healthy sources of fat. They’re high in antioxidants and can also reduce cholesterol. Additionally, avocados contain potassium. Try some with another heart-healthy food, tomatoes, in guacamole.

Healthy foods and sufficient exercise are important factors in reducing a senior’s risk of heart disease, but eating well and staying physically fit can become more challenging with age. Find your loved one the support he or she needs to maintain optimal health by reaching out to Nashville Home Care Assistance at 615.656.4999. In addition to hourly and live-in care, we provide  comprehensive stroke, Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s care for Nashville seniors. Speak with a Care Manager today, and schedule your free consultation.