After experiencing a stroke, it’s important for seniors to follow a nutritious diet plan. Eating heart-healthy foods can hasten the recovery process and prevent future strokes. Here are six foods senior stroke survivors should incorporate into their post-stroke diet.
1. Leafy Vegetables
Leafy vegetables like spinach and kale are essential for stroke survivors. These vegetables are filled with dietary fiber and folic acid, which promote cardiovascular health. They also contain antioxidants, which can prevent further cardiovascular events. Vitamin C, magnesium, potassium, and other vitamins are found in leafy greens as well, making them the ideal food for recovering stroke survivors. Seniors can eat their daily dose of greens as a refreshing salad, or they can cook them and serve them as a side dish.
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Whole grains are one of the essential food groups for stroke survivors. Many foods fall into this category, like brown rice, popcorn, and whole-grain cereal. Whole grains contain dietary fiber, which helps seniors maintain their blood cholesterol levels, as well as vitamin B1, vitamin B2, magnesium, iron, and folate. To enhance a healthy bowl of oatmeal, seniors can sweeten it with fresh fruit and thicken it with half a cup of calcium-rich milk.
Not all protein comes from meat. Beans are an inexpensive, easy way for seniors to get a healthy dose of protein. They contain plenty of fiber, vitamins, and minerals, but they don’t have the saturated fat levels of red meat. There are plenty of ways to incorporate beans into a healthy post-stroke diet. Seniors could spread them on a piece of whole-grain toast, add them to soups, or combine them with seasoned vegetables.
Seniors can swap red meat for healthy lean proteins like chicken and fish. For an extremely heart-healthy meal, seniors should turn to fish high in omega-3 fatty acids, including sardines, salmon, trout, tuna, and mackerel. The fatty acids in these fish provide excellent cardiovascular support, lower blood pressure, promote regular heartbeats, and reduce clotting. Seniors should strive to eat two servings of fatty fish every week, whether it’s grilled with a lemon rub or added to scrambled eggs for a tasty breakfast.
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5. Low-Fat Yogurt
Low-fat dairy products are also a good source of protein. Yogurt is an excellent meal supplement for seniors recovering from strokes, as it provides calcium, protein, and other heart-healthy nutrients. Seniors can dress up a bowl of plain yogurt with whole-grain granola and tasty fruit.
Seniors recovering from strokes should eat a wide variety of fruits, but berries are especially full of heart-healthy nutrients. Blueberries and raspberries contain flavonoids, a type of antioxidant that can lower blood pressure levels. Berries can be eaten as a snack, or they can be added to oatmeal, yogurt, or smoothies.
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. West Hartford, Connecticut, 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. Call Home Care Assistance at (860) 372-4500 and find out how our revolutionary care plans can help your elderly loved one age in the comfort of home.