Even though many bodily processes rely on cholesterol, it’s possible to consume too much of it. Different types of food boost cholesterol levels, which increases the risk of nerve damage, heart attacks, gallstones, and brain damage. For seniors who are trying to watch their cholesterol levels, here are eight foods that should be avoided.
Unless your loved one has made the pasta and knows exactly what’s in it, he or she should avoid this dish. Boxed pasta and pasta dishes from restaurants are almost always packed with saturated fats and cholesterol. When you or your loved one are making pasta, dairy should be kept to an absolute minimum, and processed ingredients should be avoided.
Seniors with high levels of cholesterol are at risk for several diseases, and caring for them can be overwhelming for caregivers. Families who need help caring for senior loved ones can turn to Home Care Assistance, a leading provider of elderly home care. Services available in our customizable care plans include meal prep, mental and social stimulation, assistance with personal hygiene tasks, and much more.
2. Ice Cream
This beloved dessert is one of the worst foods seniors can eat if they’re watching their cholesterol. Most commercial ice cream companies fill their products with large amounts of sugar, cholesterol, and trans fat. A fruit smoothie with honey and yogurt is a great alternative to ice cream.
3. Red Meat
Seniors don’t necessarily need to give up red meat, but they should carefully track how much beef they consume every week. Even when it’s trimmed and cooked in light olive oil, a small piece of steak could contain the entire recommended daily allowance of fat. Leaner cuts of meat that haven’t been cooked in butter or hydrogenated oil can be eaten occasionally, but they shouldn’t be a staple of anyone’s diet.
4. Baked Goods
As with pasta, your loved one should probably avoid baked goods unless he or she made them. Muffins, pancakes, and donuts put strain on the heart and arteries. Substituting some of the unhealthiest ingredients with applesauce and whole-wheat flour reduces the amount of cholesterol in each serving.
A home caregiver can help your loved one plan and prepare healthy meals. In Anchorage, senior home care providers can benefit aging adults in a variety of ways. From cooking nutritious meals to offering timely medication reminders, the dedicated caregivers at Home Care Assistance are available to help your elderly loved one 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
Many different types of seafood are extremely healthy, including fresh bass, sardines, halibut, and salmon. However, a small serving of lobster without butter contains more than 61 mg of cholesterol. Shellfish should only be eaten on special occasions, and it should never be cooked or dipped in butter. Boiling and grilling shellfish are much healthier alternatives.
Beef and pig liver are used in many different cuisines to create a variety of dishes. While this cut of meat can be delicious, it also has a lot of cholesterol. The liver produces cholesterol, and just one or two bites could put your loved one over the daily allowance. If your loved one is partial to organ meat, he or she needs to switch over to the brain, lungs, or kidneys.
7. Buttered Popcorn
Popcorn by itself is a great snack, but many companies add unhealthy ingredients to their microwave popcorn. Seniors who have high cholesterol should avoid microwave popcorn that has salt, salt-based seasonings, butter, or margarine. Making a homemade seasoning mix with exotic spices like cumin and paprika is a healthier alternative to butter.
8. Fried Chicken
Very few foods are as iconic as fried chicken, which is why this dish is so difficult for many people to give up. Fried chicken is rich in saturated fat, sodium, cholesterol, and trans fat. Baked chicken is a healthier option, and its texture and color are nearly identical to what you find with fried chicken.
Professional caregivers can help seniors maintain their health and wellbeing and stave off a number of health conditions, such as high cholesterol. Anchorage respite care professionals can assist seniors with a wide array of daily tasks, offering family caregivers the chance to focus on other personal responsibilities or take a break to prevent burnout. Whether it’s for a few hours a day or a few days a week, respite care is the perfect solution for family caregivers who are feeling overwhelmed. Trust your loved one’s care to the professionals at Home Care Assistance. To create a customized home care plan for your loved one, call (907) 770-0907 today.