A senior who has survived a stroke must follow a strict diet to lower the risk of having another stroke or a heart attack, which means reducing the intake of saturated fats and increasing whole grains. Those with diabetes must also eat foods that help them lower their blood sugar levels for optimal health. These five foods are good for the cardiovascular system and won’t cause blood sugar levels to spike.
The American Heart Association has found whole grains reduce the risk of heart attacks and strokes. However, grains are high in carbohydrates and can raise blood sugar levels. Choosing the right whole grains is essential. Quinoa is an optimal choice, as it’s naturally low in fat and high in fiber, and it contains more than eight grams of protein per serving. The fiber and protein in quinoa slow the digestion of the carbohydrates in the grain.
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2. Sweet Potatoes
Sweet potatoes get a bad reputation because they’re often served with butter and sugar, both of which aren’t healthy for the cardiovascular system, but on their own, sweet potatoes are a healthful option. They’re lower on the glycemic index than regular potatoes, which means they have less of an impact on blood sugar levels. Additionally, sweet potatoes are low in fat and high in fiber, and they contain four times the recommended daily amount of vitamin A.
3. Lean Meats
Protein is important for seniors with diabetes because it slows the digestion of food, which eliminates spikes in blood sugar levels. Some meats, such as bacon, red meat, and fatty cuts of pork, can damage the cardiovascular system. Instead, try serving lean cuts of meat, such as skinless chicken breast, trimmed pork loin, or turkey, for a protein option that’s lower in saturated fats.
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4. Roasted Cruciferous Vegetables
Cruciferous vegetables, such as cauliflower, broccoli, kale, and Brussels sprouts, are healthy options for stroke survivors with diabetes. These vegetables are low in fat and high in fiber, and they contain disease-fighting compounds that can detoxify the bloodstream.
Many people steam their vegetables and then add large amounts of butter and salt. Instead, try roasting them. Tossing vegetables in a small amount of heart-healthy olive oil and roasting them brings out the natural sweetness of the vegetables and preserves more of their nutrients than other cooking methods.
Berries are low on the glycemic index and high in antioxidants and vitamin C. Antioxidants eliminate free radicals in the body that can damage the heart and blood vessels. Berries offer a sweet option for seniors who miss desserts while trying to eat a healthy diet. If the berries are a little on the tart side, try sprinkling a small amount of stevia on them instead of sugar. Stevia is a natural sweetener that can eliminate sugar cravings.
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 Miami home care 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. Assisting Hands Home Care is here to help. Whether your parent needs minor help with daily tasks or extensive Miami 24-hour care, give us a call at (305) 574-9137 today.