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7 Reasons to Adopt the Mediterranean Diet Past Age 65

By Jeff Hill, 9:00 am on May 8, 2017

People in Greece, Italy, Spain, and Turkey are known for their longer and healthier lives. When nutritionists evaluated the secrets behind their longevity, they learned eating and social habits were likely the cause. Before long, the Mediterranean diet became popular. 

Seniors can boost their health and wellbeing by switching to the Mediterranean diet, which involves eating:

  • Beans and whole grains
  • Fruits, vegetables, and salads
  • Olive oil
  • Poultry and seafood

Maintaining a high quality of life can be challenging for some seniors, but professional caregivers can help them obtain this goal. Families can trust in Phoenix, AZ, professional home care experts to help their elderly loved ones focus on lifestyle choices that increase the chances of living a longer and healthier life.

Here are several reasons why seniors should adopt the Mediterranean diet.

1. Manage Diabetes

The Mediterranean diet does not contain artificial sweetening ingredients, GMOs, high fructose corn syrup, or processed sugar. Its flavor comes from fruits, vegetables, and herbs.

2. Promote Weight Loss

The diet contains low carbohydrates, low proteins, and healthy omega-3 fatty acids. By eating healthier, seniors get all the nutrients they need. This way, their snack cravings are reduced and losing weight becomes easier. This healthy diet also boosts mood and increases energy levels, which enables older adults to be more physically active. 

3. Enhance Heart Health

The omega-3 fatty acids and monounsaturated fats in the Mediterranean diet reduce the risk of developing heart disease. Olive oil contains a compound known as alpha-linolenic acid, which reduces the risk of a heart attack by 30 to 40 percent. Warwick Medical School researchers discovered olive oil also reduces blood pressure due to its nitric oxide content. 

4. Fights Cancer

An article published in the European Journal of Cancer Prevention explained how the Mediterranean diet interferes with the development of malignant cells. The secret lies in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, fiber, antioxidants, and polyphenols, which are contained within the many plant-based foods and oils. 

5. Protect Cognitive Health

The minerals, vitamins, and other compounds in the Mediterranean diet ensure brain cells receive the oxygen and other nutrients needed to keep neurons healthy. Seniors are then less likely to develop chemical imbalances that lead to cognitive health conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease.

Aging adults with Alzheimer’s disease can benefit from receiving professional Alzheimer’s home care. Phoenix seniors need regular mental stimulation when managing memory-related conditions, and a reliable in-home caregiver who has extensive training in Alzheimer’s care can be a great asset. 

6. Reduce Stress

By eating healthier, the body has more energy and is able to create essential chemical compounds. Increased energy allows older adults to be physically active, which helps the body eliminate stress. The proper balance of neurotransmitters keeps anxiety and depression at bay. 

7. Encourage Longevity

Adhering to the Mediterranean diet might also help seniors live well into their 90s and past the age of 100.

Caring for a senior loved one can be rewarding, but it can also be overwhelming for family caregivers who have other responsibilities they need to focus on. For these families, the perfect solution is respite care. Phoenix families rely on our caregivers whenever they need time to rest, work, run errands, and even go on vacation. If you need a break from your caregiving duties, call Home Care Assistance at 602.388.1085 and hire a dedicated caregiver for your loved one.