Hormonal changes, medications, and inactivity often cause seniors to gain weight as they age. Excess body weight may increase the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and stroke. However, don’t be tempted to encourage your senior loved one to try a fad diet. A healthy weight loss plan can help your loved one lose extra pounds and maintain a healthy weight for a healthier, happier life.
The only way to increase your loved one’s metabolic rate is by increasing his or her muscle mass. A combination of lifting weights and doing cardiovascular exercise can increase your loved one’s muscle mass, tone his or her body, and burn calories. Studies show exercise also decreases the risk of heart disease, alleviates arthritis symptoms, prevents osteoporosis, and keeps blood sugar levels stable.
If your loved one is fairly sedentary, encourage him or her to start small with walking, cycling, or swimming. Tennis, hiking, and aerobics classes can be added as your loved one becomes more confident. Joining a class at a local recreation center or finding friends to exercise with can make exercising fun and keep your loved one accountable.
A professional caregiver can be a great source of support for a senior who wants to lose weight in a healthy way. Home care service agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.
Reduce Caloric Intake
Weight loss is simply a matter of eating fewer calories than are burned each day. To reduce calories, have your loved one keep track of everything he or she eats for a week. Next, review the list with your loved one. Reducing caloric intake may be as simple as cutting back on sweets or limiting snacks. The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends that older women eat 1,600 calories a day, and men should eat around 2,000 calories per day. Caloric needs may vary depending on each individual’s metabolism, health conditions, and daily activity.
If you usually help your loved one plan and prepare nutritious meals but need a break now and then, consider enlisting the help of a professional caregiver. Families who find it difficult to care for their aging loved ones without assistance can benefit greatly from professional respite care. Coral Gables, FL, 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.
Most seniors don’t get enough fiber in their diet. The National Academy of Medicine recommends that men over the age of 50 consume 30 grams of fiber per day and women over the age of 50 eat 21 grams each day. Fiber is difficult for the body to digest, so it slows the digestion process, which keeps blood sugar levels stable and prevents your loved one from snacking between meals. Foods high in fiber include oatmeal, chia seeds, beans, squash, and raspberries.
Drink More Water
One 12-ounce can of soda contains 125 to 180 calories. If your loved one enjoys drinking a soda with meals, puts sugar in coffee or tea, or regularly consumes sports drinks, the calories can quickly add up. Replacing sugary drinks with water can cut hundreds of calories a day. If your loved one finds it difficult to drink water, suggest adding sliced fruit or squeezing lemon into a pitcher of water and keeping it chilled in the refrigerator to make it taste better.
Professional caregivers with training in nutrition and healthy habits can be a wonderful source of information and encouragement for seniors who need to lose weight. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of senior care. Coral Gables families 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. Rely on the professionals at Home Care Assistance to provide high-quality compassionate care for your loved one. Give us a call today at 1 (305) 964-5636 to learn about our flexible in-home care plans.