Heart disease remains the leading cause of death in the United States. However, it’s also highly preventable. While a genetic propensity toward developing cardiovascular issues later in life can’t be controlled, the risk of developing many forms of heart disease can be greatly reduced through preventative efforts. Here are some of the best ways for seniors to reduce their risk of heart disease.
Quit Smoking & Curb Drinking
Even social smoking can increase the odds of developing heart disease. Fortunately, the risk of developing heart disease falls to the same level as nonsmokers about five years after kicking the habit. While there are known health benefits associated with some wines, alcohol consumption should be kept to a minimum (no more than one drink a day).
Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them attain this goal. Families can trust elder care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living longer and healthier lives.
Get Regular Exercise
Getting just a half hour of exercise nearly every day can have noticeable benefits when it comes to maintaining optimal heart health. Regular activities like gardening and walking can also count as exercise. Even modified exercise routines for shorter periods can be beneficial for seniors.
If you usually help your loved one exercise but need a break now and then, consider having a professional caregiver take over for you. If your senior loved one needs hourly or live-in care, Rocklin Home Care Assistance can help. Our caregivers can assist with exercise and mobility, prepare nutritious meals, provide timely medication reminders, and help with a wide array of other important daily tasks.
Maintain a Healthy Diet
A diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables and low in saturated, polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, and trans fats can provide a solid line of defense against heart disease. Saturated fats, found primarily in red meats and dairy products, should be kept to a minimum. Additional tips for preventing heart disease include:
- Lose weight (also curbs high blood pressure)
- Get high-quality sleep (adults need 7–9 hours of regular recuperative sleep)
- Attend annual health screenings (for blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes)
- Take medications as prescribed (including aspirin when doctor suggests as a preventative measure)
For people identified as at risk for heart disease, there are still preventative measures that can be beneficial, such as adopting a well-balanced diet, reducing stress, and following a doctor-approved exercise plan. Consider scheduling regular heart exams for your loved one, since early detection is important when it comes to treating heart disease.
A professional caregiver can provide additional support for your efforts to help your loved one adopt a heart-healthy lifestyle. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of elderly home care. Rocklin families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet their elderly loved ones’ 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. To talk to one of our friendly Care Managers and create a customized senior care plan, call us at (916) 226-3737.