It’s hard to make dietary choices that provide healthy nutrition for the elderly when recommendations seem to change from one week to the next. We’d been told that saturated fats from sources such as butter, red meat and fried food were detrimental, but later research indicated there wasn’t enough proof that those who gave up these delicacies improved their heart health – and so, we were given the green light to choose butter over margarine once again.
However, as reported in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology, scientists clarify that the lack of noticeable results in reducing saturated fats is more likely related to equally poor dietary choices made in place of those fats – such as refined carbs. People who had replaced the saturated fats with more nutritional options, like whole grains and polyunsaturated fats such as olive oil, did lower their risk of heart disease by as much as 25%.
According to Adela Hruby, a researcher from the study, “We know that people don’t just drop 10% of their calories…and not replace them with other things. What they are adding in to replace what they’re not eating is really important.”
Research, led by Dr. Frank Hu of the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, was quite thorough, following the results of approximately 130,000 men and women over a period of thirty years. Monitoring dietary choices and any heart-related conditions, it was established that people who chose carbohydrates instead of the saturated fats ended up with a practically equal risk of heart disease – which was overlooked in earlier studies that had established there was no real benefit to cutting back on saturated fats.
So what can we learn from all of this? Perhaps we’d be best served by not only reducing saturated fat, but by choosing healthy replacements over processed flour-based products and those with a high sugar content.
Regency Home Care, an Atlanta home care company, is also always on hand to plan and prepare meals that provide healthy nutrition for the elderly and are also delicious, helping reduce the risk for heart attacks and disease. We can also assist aging adults with:
- Making appropriate dietary choices, and picking up groceries so fresh, healthy foods are always readily available
- Taking medications as prescribed
- Participating in doctor-approved exercise programs
- Safe transportation and accompaniment to appointments and other outings
- And much more
Give us a call at 678.999.2446 to learn more.