High blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes are all good reason for your parents to change their eating habits. Whether their doctor has diagnosed them with one of these health issues or they’re at risk, there are three diets that rated highly with U.S. News and World Report. Kick off 2018 trying out one of these three diets. As with any diet or change to nutritional factors in your senior’s life, consult with your senior’s doctor before they make any lifestyle changes.
The Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension (DASH) has spent several years on the list of best diets to follow. This diet is similar to the Mediterranean diet, but it also focuses on reducing sodium intake. Here’s a sample meal plan:
- Breakfast – Bowl of All-Bran cereal with fresh peaches and almond milk.
- Lunch – Salt-free bean soup with a side salad
- Snack – ¼ cup of almonds or walnuts
- Dinner – 3 ounces of baked chicken breast tossed with a cup of soba noodles, fresh carrots, fresh garlic, roasted asparagus, green onions, raw red peppers, ginger, and almonds.
The Flexitarian diet is one of the easiest to follow. For this diet, eat vegetarian meals and snacks three or four days a week. The rest of the week, you can have meals with fish, seafood, and lean meats. For example:
- Monday – Vegetarian Lasagna
- Tuesday – Paella
- Wednesday – Portabella Stroganoff
- Thursday – Spinach and Garlic Stuffed Chicken Breast
- Friday – Tofu Tacos
- Saturday – Baked Cod on Couscous
- Sunday – Ratatouille and Whole Grain Baguette
Doctors have been recommending the Mediterranean diet for years. This diet can improve heart health. The food pyramid with the Mediterranean diet requires daily fruits, vegetables, olive oil, grains, nuts, and legumes. Seafood and fish are next. Poultry and dairy should be limited to a couple times a week.
Red meats and sugary, fatty foods are meant to be avoided. For beverages, a glass of red wine is okay, but water is best. It’s also touted that those following the diet lead an active lifestyle and enjoy meals with friends and family. Here’s a sample daily menu:
- Breakfast – Oatmeal with pecans and flax seeds with a small glass of cherry juice
- Snack – Three slices of mango and a glass of water
- Lunch – Greek salad with a homemade dressing of lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and oregano
- Snack – ¼ cup of roasted chickpeas and a glass of water
- Dinner – Ratatouille on a bed of quinoa and spinach with a glass of red wine
- Dessert – ¼ cup of grapes
Hire an elder care aide to make sure your parents stay on track. With the help of a caregiver for menu planning, grocery shopping, and meal preparation, they’ll have the support they need to stick to the diet. A caregiver can help them find appropriate meals and snacks, do daily exercises, and remember to take medications each day. Call an elder care agency to find out more about the many services caregivers offer.
If you or an aging loved one are considering elder care in Point Pleasant, NJ, contact the caring staff at Care Street Home Care’s Ocean/Monmouth Division. Call today 732-719-7011.
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