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Help Your Elderly Loved One Avoid Weight Gain

By Kevin McClarren, 9:00 am on

Helping your senior loved one maintain a healthy weight can decrease his or her risk for a number of health conditions while also promoting a higher quality of life. Since lifestyle factors can have a big influence on weight management, promoting healthy lifestyle choices can help your loved one avoid weight gain. Read on for five weight management tips, presented by the Warren senior care experts at Home Care Assistance.

1. Promote a Healthy Diet

A varied diet that incorporates elements from all parts of the food pyramid is important when promoting healthy eating. The best way to ensure your loved one eats a balanced diet is to avoid prepackaged or processed foods and snacking. Help keep your loved one from frequent grazing by providing three square meals a day that contain a variety of fresh produce and unprocessed meats.

2. Limit Sugar

While some sweets, particularly those found in fruits, are good in moderation, a high-sugar diet can lead to weight gain. Avoid tempting your loved one with sweet foods by only purchasing desserts and candy for special occasions. As an added benefit, avoiding sweet and sugary foods can help promote senior dental health and prevent diabetes.

3. Support Physical Activity

Remaining physically active is one of the most important ways to help your loved one avoid weight gain and a variety of other health concerns. Setting up a regular time for your loved one to exercise every day can make an physical routine easier to maintain. If your loved one doesn’t exercise frequently, help him or her get started by encouraging family members or a Warren hourly caregiver to go on short walks with your loved one. Suggest that your loved one goes on walks after meals to promote a healthy digestion, as well as regular exercise.

4. Keep Doctor Appointments

Ensuring your elderly relative keeps his or her doctor appointments is important. When your loved one’s physician sees him or her on a regular basis, it becomes easier for the doctor to point out health issues and track irregular weight gain and loss. If your loved one is struggling to keep his or her weight down, doctors can also offer personalized weight management advice, as well as referrals to nutritionists and other weight-loss specialists.

5. Encourage Hydration

As dehydration is common in seniors, it’s important to remind your loved one to drink a lot of water. Because many seniors misread signals of thirst as hunger pains, ensuring that your loved one is properly hydrated can help him or her avoid unnecessary snacking. Drinking water before eating or throughout a meal can also help your loved one judge when he or she is full, thereby preventing accidental overeating.

Because physical challenges, like Parkinson’s disease or stroke, can diminish your senior loved one’s ability to exercise and prepare healthy meals, he or she may benefit from the in-home assistance of a Parkinson’s or stroke caregiver in Warren. At Home Care Assistance, our experienced caregivers are expertly trained to help seniors with a range of daily tasks, including physical activity, grocery shopping, and cooking. To learn more about how our senior care services can help your loved one avoid weight gain, dial 908.450.9400 to speak with a Care Manager and schedule your free no-obligation consultation.