Great foods for elderly diabetics

The risk of diabetes increases significantly for those over 60 years old. Half of all diabetes cases occur in people older than 55 years of age, and nearly twenty percent of the U.S. population over 60 has diabetes.

If you’re aging mother or father has been diagnosed, there are ways that you can help them by improving their diet. Diet coupled with regular exercise and prescribed medications are key to keeping your loved one’s diabetes under control. The American Diabetes Association offers a list of super foods for both type 1 and type 2 diabetics.

These foods contain nutrients that are needed by people with diabetes like calcium, potassium, magnesium and vitamins A, C and E. Many of the selections are also high in fiber to keep glycemic index low to avoid spikes in blood sugar. Other benefits of these foods are keeping cholesterol and blood pressure in check, which helps with overall health.

Beans

It really doesn’t matter what type of beans you eat — they’re all great for you. They’re high in fiber. In just a half-cup you can get one-third of your daily requirement. Beans also provide the body with needed magnesium and potassium. Beans will also help meet daily requirements for meat. A half cup provides as much protein as an ounce of meat. Fresh beans are terrific. If using canned beans, be sure to drain and rinse them to eliminate as much sodium as possible.

Dark-green leafy vegetables

Spinach, collards and kale make great additions to a variety of meals. They’re virtually calorie free and can be enjoyed to your heart’s content on their own.

Citrus fruits

Citrus fruits contribute to your daily dose of soluble fiber and vitamin C. Some say that eating citrus fruits can also aid with smoking cessation if eaten immediately after smoking.

Sweet potatoes

These starchy vegetables are powerhouses of vitamin A and fiber. They also have a lower glycemic index than regular potatoes.

Berries

For such tiny fruit, any variety of berry is packed with antioxidants, vitamins and fiber. The article at the ADA suggests making a parfait by alternating berries with light, non-fat yogurt.

Tomatoes

No matter how you say it, tomatoes provide vitamin C, iron and vitamin E. There is some evidence to suggest that lycopene, found in tomatoes, also prevents prostrate cancer.

Fish (Omega 3)

Salmon is, of course, a great source of Omega-3. Just don’t consider a trip to Long John Silver’s with breaded and fried fish to count towards your 6 to 9 servings of fish per week. These types of fish are negating any healthful benefits they would have with deep-frying.

For the full list, please visit the ADA website. Here’s a link to their Living Healthy with Diabetes Guide.

Encompass Senior Solutions currently serving Omaha, Eastern Nebraska and Western Iowa provides seniors and their families a complete understanding of the available care options and helps families maneuver through the challenges of the system. All Encompass services are directed by registered nurses or licensed clinical social workers with no long-term contracts. Contact us today for help with your senior care needs.

“Encompass Senior Solutions solves the problems families face in finding home health care providers they can trust. Providers who will focus on strategies that keep parents in their homes. To learn more about our health care services, visit http://www.encompass-home-health-care.com.”