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Maintaining Cholesterol Levels in Older Adults

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Seniors may be susceptible to high cholesterol as a result of a slower metabolic rate, chronic illnesses, and certain medications. Because high cholesterol can raise the risk for strokes and heart attacks, it’s important to maintain healthy cholesterol levels in the senior years. Here are some things you can do to help your aging loved one maintain healthy cholesterol levels and reduce the risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Limit Tobacco and Alcohol Intake

Encouraging your loved one to quit smoking and limit the intake of alcoholic beverages can help him or her maintain healthy cholesterol levels. Cigarette smoking and consuming alcohol can lower levels of high-density lipoproteins. These substances are thought to protect against cardiovascular disease, so it’s crucial their levels don’t decrease. Also, drinking alcohol can raise other blood lipids known as triglycerides, which may heighten the risk for strokes and heart attacks. If your loved one is unable to quit smoking or drinking alcohol independently, make an appointment with a physician who can recommend effective treatment options for smoking cessation and alcohol avoidance.

Your loved one may require constant professional supervision at home to break unhealthy addictions and focus on healthier lifestyle choices. The type of home care Oshkosh, Wisconsin, seniors need can vary. Some need assistance a few hours a day, while others require more extensive around-the-clock assistance. At Home Care Assistance, we tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual care needs, and the plans can be adjusted at any time.

Consume Garlic

Garlic has potent antilipemic properties that play an important role in lowering cholesterol levels. Garlic contains allicin, which raises “good cholesterol” levels while lowering bad cholesterol. Although increasing the intake of garlic may have positive effects on serum cholesterol, talk to the doctor to make sure it’s safe for your loved one to consume. Because of its ability to decrease platelet aggregation, garlic may not be recommended for people who take aspirin or prescription blood thinners daily.

Eat Citrus Fruits

Citrus fruits are rich in vitamin C and potassium. Both nutrients have heart-healthy properties such as the ability to lower blood pressure, regulate the heart rate, and maintain healthy cholesterol levels. If your loved one is unable to eat enough citrus fruits to meet the recommended daily allowances for vitamin C and potassium, talk to his or her healthcare provider about taking an over-the-counter supplement.

Older adults, particularly those with multiple health conditions, may have nutritional deficiencies that affect their quality of life. Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust Oshkosh elderly home care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life.

Walk Often

Walking and other forms of exercise can lower cholesterol levels while keeping high blood pressure at bay. Mild exercise may also relieve feelings of anxiety and stress, which are risk factors in the development of high cholesterol. Walking also keeps excess weight off, which lowers the risk of developing elevated serum cholesterol. While walking is usually recommended for most people, check with a physician to make sure your loved one is able to start a new exercise plan. Walking lowers cholesterol levels, keeps the cardiovascular system healthy, and promotes restorative sleep so seniors feel more energized and hopeful about the future.

Healthy lifestyle changes can help older adults maintain ideal cholesterol levels. If you’re the primary family caregiver for a senior loved one living in Oshkosh, live-in care is available if your loved one’s health has become too difficult to manage without professional expertise. At Home Care Assistance, we take measures to help seniors prevent illness and injury by assisting with exercise and mobility, preparing nutritious meals, helping with bathing and other personal hygiene tasks, and much more. Please call us at (920) 710-2273 today to learn more about how our premier care plans can benefit your loved one.