5 Reasons to Try the Mediterranean Diet in the Golden Years

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Upon discovering the prevalence of healthy senior citizens in the Mediterranean region, researchers became intrigued to learn their secret. The PREDIMED study led to the discovery of the Mediterranean diet and how it benefits older adults. Here are a few reasons your senior loved one should try this diet.

1. Maintain a Healthy Weight

Articles published in the American Journal of Medicine claim that eating the Mediterranean Diet offers a greater chance of maintaining a healthy weight compared to other low-fat diets. German researchers observed that people consuming the Mediterranean Diet lost an average of 11 pounds after 12 weeks, and they were able to maintain their new weight one year later. By choosing the Mediterranean diet, seniors feel full longer without having a need to snack on unhealthy food choices. 

Preparing nutritious meals can be challenging for some seniors. If your aging loved one needs occasional help with bathing, grooming, cooking, or other basic household tasks, or if you need time to attend to important personal matters, reach out to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of live-in and respite care. Chandler seniors can maintain their independence while living at home with the help of our reliable respite caregivers.

2. Boost Cardiovascular Health

Seniors who follow the Mediterranean diet have a significantly lower risk of developing cardiovascular disease than older adults who eat other low-fat foods. The Mediterranean diet contains fish, olive oil, and nuts that provide the omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats needed to protect the heart and blood vessels. Olive oil contains the fatty acid known as alpha-linolenic acid, which reduces the chance of cardiac arrest by up to 40 percent. The nitric oxide content of this healthy fat also relaxes blood vessels and reduces blood pressure. 

3. Prevent Diabetes

A study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine reported that after following the Mediterranean diet for four years, only 44 percent of the participating diabetics required medication. On the other hand, 70 percent of the diabetics who used another low-fat diet continued needing prescription anti-diabetic medications. The Mediterranean diet helps people maintain normal blood sugar levels, as it does not include high fructose corn syrup, artificial sweeteners, or processed sugars.

4. Protect Cognitive Health

An article from the American Journal of Psychiatry explains that the Mediterranean diet has the potential to prevent the progression of dementia and other types of cognitive impairment. The clue lies in the abundance of minerals, vitamins, fiber, and fatty acids in the diet that nourish neurons while ensuring their ongoing health and function.

Switching to the Mediterranean diet is just one of the many ways older adults can delay cognitive decline. Seniors who want to remain healthy as they age can benefit in a variety of ways when they receive professional elderly care. Chandler, AZ, Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one accomplish daily tasks, prevent illness, and focus on living a healthier and more fulfilling life.  

5. Promote Longevity

Daily meals prepared using fruits, vegetables, fish, poultry, legumes, nuts, and olive oil help seniors live longer. A glass of wine is also permitted at mealtime. Studies indicate healthy senior citizens have longer telomeres, which are found on the ends of chromosomes. The DNA-containing telomeres protect chromosomes, which enable cells to reproduce and grow. Adults with shorter telomeres typically have shorter lifespans.

In addition to following the Mediterranean diet, seniors can enjoy a high quality of life by making other healthy lifestyle choices. If your loved one needs help maintaining healthy habits and accomplishing daily tasks, a Chandler caregiver from Home Care Assistance can help. Our caregivers are expertly trained to provide mental and social stimulation, assist with exercise, prepare nutritious meals, and much more. To hire a professional in-home care expert for your loved one, call us at 480.448.6215 today.

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