How to Lower the Risk of Developing Heart Disease in the Senior Years

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Heart disease affects many seniors, but it isn’t inevitable. By making healthy lifestyle choices, older adults can build their endurance and boost their overall health. Here are a few ways to reduce the risk of developing heart disease in the senior years.

Eat a Healthy Diet

Eating nutritious meals can enhance an older adult’s quality of life, especially when it comes to heart health. Switching to healthy foods can reduce the amount of bad cholesterol (LDL) in the body and help seniors maintain healthy blood sugar levels. Encourage your loved one to eat foods full of antioxidants, which can increase circulation and reduce the risk of plaque buildup.

The best heart-healthy foods for seniors include:

• Walnuts 
• Salmon 
• Broccoli 
• Blueberries 
• Dark chocolate 
• Green tea 
• Red wine

Some seniors need help switching to nutritious foods. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of home care. Barrie Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives.

Control Stress Levels

Heart disease is one of the leading causes of death among the elderly, but staying stress-free can strengthen the heart and reduce the risk of cardiovascular issues. Chronic stress exposes the body to cortisol, adrenaline, and other unhealthy hormones that increase the risk of heart disease. Elevated levels of these stress hormones can change the way blood clots, which is the primary risk factor associated with heart disease. Some of the ways aging adults can lower their stress levels include meditating, getting plenty of rest, staying socially active, and participating in fun activities.

Regular socialization is one of the best ways to stave off stress and boost emotional wellbeing in the golden years. For families living in Barrie, respite care can be a wonderful solution when their aging loved ones need companionship and socialization a few hours a week or just need minor assistance with daily household tasks. At Home Care Assistance, we thrive on helping seniors maintain their independence while living in the comfort of home.

Stop Using Tobacco Products

Seniors who stop smoking completely can increase their chance at longevity. The compounds and chemicals found in smoke from cigarettes and other tobacco products are tied to heart disease because they corrode the blood vessels. When blood vessels corrode, blood clots may begin to appear. Quitting cigarettes is one of the best ways to prevent blood clots and maintain healthy blood pressure levels. Tobacco products also inflame the lungs and reduce the concentration of oxygen in the blood. It’s important for your parent to stop smoking and avoid secondhand smoke to reduce the risk of heart disease.

Exercise on a Regular Basis

Dangerous blood clots are more likely to form when cholesterol lines the circulatory system. The plaque builds up over time. When it breaks away from the vessel, a blood clot can form and travel to the heart, causing a heart attack. Regular exercise can reduce the risk of a stroke and heart attack. When seniors exercise, they can remove LDL (bad cholesterol) from their bloodstream. The lower amounts of LDL older adults have, the less plaque buildup they experience on their artery walls.

The best cardiovascular exercises for seniors to do include:

• Walking 
• Water aerobics 
• Biking 
• Running 
• Yoga

Seniors who need help maintaining their overall health should consider professional in-home care. Barrie elderly care experts are available to provide high-quality care to seniors on an as-needed basis. From assistance with mobility and exercise to providing transportation to the doctor’s office and social events, there are a variety of ways professional caregivers can help your aging loved one continue to live independently. To hire a professionally trained caregiver for your aging parent, call Home Care Assistance at 705-503-2273 today.