Overweight seniors are at risk for several chronic diseases. Heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and arthritis are some of the conditions obese individuals can develop. Avoiding or postponing the negative health impact of chronic disease is a good reason for a senior to lose a few pounds. However, it’s essential that seniors follow weight loss plans that provide adequate nutrients.
Avoid Fad Diets
Some seniors turn to fad diets that promise quick weight loss. Often, these weight loss programs limit the kinds of food a senior can eat and exclude foods that contain valuable nutrients. Fad diets can put seniors at risk for brittle bones, compromised immunity, and other health issues. Seniors who lose weight by following fad diets usually discover they gain the weight back quickly.
Emphasize Healthy Eating
Whether a senior is interested in losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight, nutrition experts recommend eating a balanced diet that includes selections from all the food groups. The key is to select healthy foods that are low in sugar and unhealthy fats. For example, having a fresh apple instead of a piece of apple pie means not eating added sugar and fat that can lead to weight gain. Additionally, a whole apple provides more healthy nutrients, and it also contains more fiber. Fiber creates a feeling of fullness, which can result in eating less. Eating grilled or baked chicken rather than breaded fried chicken is another example of reducing calories by making a healthy choice. Eating more vegetables and plant-based proteins such as beans and nuts can help a senior lose unwanted pounds. Seniors can be more successful at losing weight by developing long-term healthy eating patterns that extend beyond short periods of “dieting.”
Home care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Home Care Assistance, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. We offer a revolutionary program called the Balanced Care Method, which encourages seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.
Include Physical Activity
Regular physical activity and exercise can help seniors lose weight and keep it off. Physical activity such as walking burns calories and builds lean muscle mass. Muscles burn fat while at rest, which provides additional fat burning when a senior is trying to lose weight. While some seniors might find it challenging to engage in moderate to strenuous exercise, there are alternatives. Exercising in a pool burns calories, puts less stress on the joints, and can even relieve pain if the pool is heated. Chair exercises are good alternatives for seniors with limited mobility. A senior can work with a physical therapist to find exercises that are safe and effective.
If you usually help your loved one exercise but need a break now and then, consider having a professional caregiver take over for you. For some families, caring for a senior loved one can be overwhelming at times. Luckily, they can rely on professional respite care. Tampa, FL, Home Care Assistance is a trusted name in respite and hourly care. Our caregivers are available around the clock to assist seniors with bathing, transportation, medication reminders, exercise, and much more, allowing families the time they need to focus on other important responsibilities or just take a break.
Discuss Weight Loss Needs with Healthcare Providers
Doctors often encourage seniors to lose weight for health reasons. Seniors who have a difficult time losing weight may have issues that interfere with weight loss. Some prescription medications can cause weight gain. Thyroid disorders are another reason some individuals experience difficulty losing weight. A healthcare provider can order tests to determine if the inability to lose weight is associated with factors beyond a senior’s control.
Professional caregivers with training in nutrition and healthy habits can be a wonderful source of information and encouragement for seniors who need to lose weight. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of senior home care. Tampa families can rely on Home Care Assistance to provide individualized care plans to meet your elderly loved one’s 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. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at (813) 302-7632 to learn more about our customized care plans.