More vegans today are opting to eliminate all animal products from their diets because they’re hoping to see positive changes in their health. A vegan diet can provide your senior loved one with many benefits, but only if the diet is approached correctly. Here are a few things your loved one needs to consider when switching to a vegan diet.
1. Calcium Is Important
Your loved one will need to consume enough calcium to prevent age-related conditions like osteoporosis. A shortage of calcium is one of the top contributing factors to this disease, and your loved one cannot just assume his or her calcium needs are being met while on a vegan diet. Instead, your loved one will need to pay extra attention to the amount of calcium he or she is getting from plant-based sources. Make sure your loved one consumes these sources of calcium while eating vegan:
- Dark green leafy vegetables
- Fortified orange juice
- Blackstrap molasses
- Soy milk
Good nutrition is especially important as we get older, and some aging adults need help to get the nutrients they need every day. Elder care agencies can be a great boon to seniors. With the help of the caregivers at Prestige Home Care Orlando, your aging loved one can lead a happier and healthier life. Our caregivers encourage seniors to eat nutritious foods, exercise and socialize regularly, and focus on other lifestyle factors that increase life expectancy.
2. Protein Needs to Be Incorporated Regularly
As your loved one ages, it’s natural for the amount of physical activity he or she gets to decrease. However, by eating protein, your loved one can keep his or her muscles at optimal strength. Many seniors are under the misconception that meat is the only form of protein that matters, which prevents them from going vegan. However, there are many protein-rich foods your loved one can and should eat when switching to a vegan diet, which include:
- Soy products
If your loved one has difficulty shopping for food or preparing nutritious meals, consider adding a professional caregiver to your family’s caregiving team. There are a variety of age-related health conditions that can make it more challenging for seniors to live independently. However, many of the challenges they face can be easier to manage if their families opt for professional home care service. Orlando families can rely on expertly trained caregivers to keep their loved ones safe and comfortable while aging in place.
3. Vitamin D Supplements Might Be Necessary
Although vitamin D deficiency isn’t common among vegans, it’s definitely a concern for seniors, especially those who spend little time outside in the sunlight. Vitamin D can prevent certain diseases, including diabetes, some forms of cancer, and heart disease. Because a vegan diet contains little vitamin D, your loved one will likely need to supplement the vitamin to meet the necessary levels. Some of the best sources of vitamin D for seniors on a vegan diet include:
- Chanterelle and portobello mushrooms
- Almond milk
- Soy yogurt
- Fortified orange juice
4. There Are Many Health Benefits
Your loved one can reduce his or her risk of many chronic diseases by switching to a vegan diet. Going vegan means the foods your loved one eats will be low in saturated fat and free of cholesterol. Plant-based food also has more fiber, which is a definite plus for seniors. A vegan diet can help your loved one reduce the risk of:
- Heart attack
Many seniors gravitate to the vegan diet because they cannot easily digest meat and dairy products. Although going vegan is typically a sound decision for seniors, your loved one will need to take a closer look at the reasons the animal-based foods he or she eats are causing weight gain, inflammation, bloating, and fatigue. A vegan diet can help your loved one prevent many of these problematic issues, but the diet doesn’t necessarily solve the root of the problem. Your loved one will need to rebalance his or her body to regain tolerance for foods, including those that are a part of a vegan diet.
Some seniors only require help with a few daily tasks so they can maintain their independence. However, those living with serious illnesses may need more extensive assistance. Luckily, there is professional live-in care Altamonte Springs, FL, seniors can rely on. Home can be a safer and more comfortable place for your loved one to live with the help of an expertly trained and dedicated live-in caregiver. If you need professional home care for your aging loved one, our Care Managers are just a phone call away. Reach out to Prestige Home Care Orlando today at (407) 604-0504.