As people age, their dietary needs often change. Some seniors eat whatever they want, while others decide it’s time to switch to healthy foods. When older adults are faced with new nutritional necessities, avoiding meat is one of the healthiest choices they can make. Here are a few reasons seniors should quit eating meat.
1. Protect against Disease
Meat is one of the main sources of saturated fat and cholesterol. Cutting back on meat can reduce daily intake of fat and cholesterol and lower the risk of many chronic diseases. Following a healthy vegetarian or vegan diet may decrease the likelihood of developing heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
Seniors can face a variety of age-related challenges. Though some families choose to take on the caregiving duties, there may come a time when they need a trusted homecare services provider. Families sometimes need respite from their duties so they can focus on their other responsibilities, and some seniors need around-the-clock assistance that their families are not able to provide. Home Care Assistance is here to help.
2. Lower the Risk of Food Poisoning
Undercooked meat and poultry are among the most common causes of food poisoning, which could lead to sepsis and infection. Seniors with compromised immune systems may want to avoid all potential sources of food poisoning, including meat.
3. Promote Digestion
When seniors cut meat out of their diets, they should switch to healthier proteins, such as nuts, lentils, beans, eggs, and tofu, and increase their daily fruit and vegetable intake. Older adults are more likely to eat raw foods, which are high in digestive enzymes. These enzymes, which include proteases, lipases, and amylases, break down food into small digestible molecules. Many seniors have digestive disorders, and eating too much high-fat meat can exacerbate these issues. Avoiding meat and eating more raw foods may regulate the digestive system. To maximize their digestion, seniors should eat raw foods like pineapples, avocados, mangos, and bananas.
From preparing nutritious meals to managing basic housekeeping tasks, there are several activities older adults may not be able to manage independently. Some seniors need occasional assistance at home, and oftentimes the family members who take care of them need time away to run errands, take a nap, go to work, or take a vacation. Richmond respite care experts from Home Care Assistance are available on an as-needed basis, giving your family peace of mind that your loved one will remain safe and comfortable while you relax or focus on other important responsibilities.
4. Lose Weight
Overweight seniors are at risk for heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other chronic conditions. Plant-based diets aren’t intrinsically healthier than meat-filled diets, but cutting meat out of the diet is an effective way to lose weight. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables is one of the best ways to protect against age-related weight gain and stay full for longer.
5. Enhance Brain Health
To protect the brain from inflammation and oxidative damage, seniors need to follow diets high in antioxidants. Fruits and vegetables are great sources of antioxidants, including vitamins C and E and beta-carotene. The anti-inflammatory nutrients protect the brain and enhance the health of the skin, joints, immune system, and cardiovascular system.
Quitting meat is one of the healthiest lifestyle choices older adults should consider. 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 at-home care. Richmond Home Care Assistance provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives. To learn about our high-quality in-home care services, give us a call at (804) 207-4746 today.