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Top Healthy Foods for Seniors During Stroke Recovery

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After receiving immediate medical intervention, stroke survivors commonly need to undergo physical and or speech therapy following the event. The rehabilitation process often involves lifestyle changes, such as adopting a healthy diet. There are many foods healthcare providers recommend for stroke survivors. However, the foods may need altering when seniors have swallowing difficulty secondary to the vascular accident.

Lean Proteins

Proteins are needed for the body as fuel to ensure healing. However, the only meats in the diet should be lean. Seniors are generally advised to include skinless chicken, turkey, or other poultry in addition to fish. Herring, mackerel, and salmon are rich sources of omega-3 fatty acids, which are necessary to protect delicate nerve tissue. Older adults should also consider including walnuts, canola oil, and olive oil in their diets. These substances contain alpha-linolenic and omega-3 fatty acids, which play a role in blood clot prevention. Red meats should be limited to two or fewer servings per week. By choosing lean meats, stroke survivors reduce the risk of having elevated LDL cholesterol levels, which contribute to plaque formations that block blood vessels and may lead to additional strokes. In general, recovering seniors should strive to get at least two servings of protein each day.

Recovering from a stroke, managing the symptoms of Alzheimer’s, and a variety of other health-related situations can make it difficult for a senior to continue living at home without someone there to help. Ft. Lauderdale live-in care professionals are trained to help seniors who need 24/7 assistance. With the help of a live-in caregiver, your elderly loved one can maintain a higher quality of life while aging in place.

Fruits and Vegetables

Seasonal fresh or frozen produce contains antioxidants, which interfere with the damaging effects of free radicals. Brightly colored produce contains chemical compounds known as anthocyanidins. Examples of these fruits and vegetables include:

• Berries
• Carrots
• Eggplant
• Grapes
• Tomatoes
• Green and purple leafy vegetables

In addition to protecting cells against the threat of free radicals, antioxidants are considered helpful in preventing hypertension and reducing inflammation. The compounds also play a role in helping tissues recover faster. Five to seven daily servings of fruits and vegetables contain an abundance of minerals and vitamins the body needs for cells, organs, and systems to function at the best level possible.

If your senior loved one needs help managing an illness or assistance with daily tasks, make sure you choose a top-rated provider of home care. Lauderdale-by-the-Sea Home Care Assistance is here to help your loved one live a happier and healthier life in the golden years. From the mentally stimulating activities in our Cognitive Therapeutics Method to our friendly Care Managers who are available to answer your questions 24 hours a day, we offer a wide array of high-quality at-home care services.

Vitamin B–Rich Foods

Make sure to include produce offering rich sources of B-complex vitamins. B vitamins protect nerve tissue and are essential for central nervous system function. Folic acid and vitamins B6 and B12 also reduce homocysteine levels. Homocysteine is a byproduct of meat digestion and metabolism. Elevated levels of the substance have been linked to blood clot formation and hardening of the arteries. Vitamin B–rich foods include: 

• Chicken
• Eggs
• Herring
• Salmon
• Asparagus
• Broccoli
• Carrots
• Dark green leafy vegetables
• Peas
• Sunflower seeds
• Walnuts

Whole Grains 

Barley, buckwheat, oats, and millet are whole grains that are recommended for recovering stroke survivors. The grains are rich in fiber, which aids in maintaining low LDL cholesterol and triglyceride levels. Whole grains also provide a number of nutrients and are easily prepared as a porridge or added to soups and stews for seniors who need softer foods. Stroke survivors should strive to get two to four servings of whole grains each day. 

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 elderly 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. Home Care Assistance is here to help. If your loved one needs assistance with the challenges of aging, reach out to one of our knowledgeable, compassionate Care Managers today at (954) 909-0370.