Personalized Home Care in Houston Texas

Seniors and Nutrition: What is the DASH Eating Plan?

Elderly Care in Houston, TX – How This Nutritional Change Can Benefit Your Elderly Loved One

According to the National institutes of Health, it’s important for people over the age of 50 to eat a diet which helps lower the risks of hypertension. Choosing a healthy diet is a smart thing to do for people of all ages.

“What kind of diet should someone over 50 eat to have normal blood pressure? Healthy food can help control blood pressure and lower the risk of hypertension. The Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) eating plan:

  • Emphasizes vegetables, fruit, and fat-free or low-fat dairy products
  • Includes whole grains, fish, poultry, vegetable oils, and beans, seeds, and nuts
  • Limits sodium, sweets, sugary beverages, and red meats

It’s good for all women—and men—to choose healthy foods to enhance heart health and avoid hypertension, osteoporosis, and diabetes. In general, women need fewer calories and different amounts of vitamins and minerals than men.” (Source)

When changing your eating habits, you may need some easy guidelines to follow in the beginning. For someone who has been eating the same way for a long time, for example your senior parent, changes in diet may not come along very easily. If you can encourage him to stick with it for a few weeks, he should start feeling the increase in health and it will provide even more motivation.

Some tips to make the transition easier:

  • Eat a wide variety of fruits and vegetables in as many different colors and recipes as you can. This helps the food to be interesting and appetizing. Look for a recipe book or online for color pictures to help you know what the food will look like.
  • Whole grains should account for at least half – or more – of the total grain servings. The extra fiber and nutrients in the whole grain are very beneficial. Switch up the grains a little, too. Instead of eating just wheat bread, try multigrain bread. Or make cornmeal muffins or try rice crackers. There are many options available.
  • Eat seafood twice weekly. The best to choose are the fatty fishes like salmon, which provides a healthy dose of omega-3s.
  • Limit the intake of solid fats, saturated fats, trans-fats and added sugars. Store-bought baked goods such as muffins are usually high in both fats and sugars. Read food labels carefully.

One trick people use to make sure they are eating a balanced diet is to visually divide their plate in half. On one side, fill up the half plate with vegetables and fruit. On the other half, divide it into half. Fill one of the fourths with carbs such as pasta or potatoes and the other fourth with protein sources such as fish, meat, tofu or legumes.

Does your elderly loved one need some assistance to plan and prepare a healthy meal plan? Do they need a little help with personal care or light housekeeping? Consider hiring an elder care provider to meet these needs.

If you have a loved one who could benefit from the help of elderly care in Houston, TX contact At Your Side Home Care. We help seniors and their families with many levels of home care service. Call (832) 271-1600 for more information.

Donna Wrabel, LMSW

For most of us, the word "home" evokes warm feelings of comfort, security and well-being. For older adults, home also means holding tight to cherished memories and maintaining self-esteem and independence. When illness, injury or age make life a little more challenging, remaining at home in a comfortable, familiar environment encourages recovery and enhances the quality of life. Home can be defined as a private residence, an independent or assisted living facility or even a short term stay in the hospital, we recognize the additional benefits provided by a personal, professional assistant.

Our Certified Nurse Aides, 24-Hour Live-in Assistants and Home Health Aides are available 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. We also provide the security and confidence of 24-hour Telephone Assistance, so fast, reliable help is always available when it's needed. To learn more about our homecare services see our homecare services page.

Different people need different levels of homecare. To meet the requirements of our clients, At Your Side Homecare maintains consistent staffing levels of caring professionals. Homecare service is available for as little as a few hours a week, or as many as 24 hours a day, seven days a week