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February being heart health month gives us an opportunity to let everyone know that it is incredibly important for older adults, as well as their family members and caregivers, to be aware of a few healthy heart habits for seniors.

You may be wondering why heart disease becomes more common as people get older? There are a number of factors that come into play.

It may become more difficult to exercise for many people as they age, or they may be dealing with mobility issues. They may not be cooking fresh, heart healthy meals. Stress and an accumulation of unhealthy habits such as smoking can also contribute to heart problems in seniors.

Luckily, heart disease isn’t an inevitable side effect of aging and does not affect everyone. It’s never too late to make a change and try switch over to some healthy habits. Here are a few important tips.

Exercise or at least get moving. Studies have shown a sedentary lifestyle contributes to bad heart health, amongst other ailments. This doesn’t mean you have to become a Gym star or hit the treadmill every day. Start slowly, as trying to do too much, too fast, may lead to injuries or exhaustion. A simple walk, moving your arms and legs, flexing, stretching and maybe even a few simple yoga postures should do the trick. Never sit for hours on end, get up and move about frequently.

For older adults who have mobility issues, the support of a home caregiver can be a tremendous help. A home caregiver is trained to assist with mobility issues and can help seniors exercise the right way.

Nutrition and Healthy Eating. It goes without saying that healthy eating is a major factor in maintaining heart health. Make informed choices and style your diet accordingly. But even as we say that, always check with your Doctor before making any drastic changes to your diet. Our caregivers can help with shopping and cooking and will help our clients stay healthy by purchasing the right items and preparing nutritious foods.

Avoid Smoking and Reduce Alcohol Intake. It may come as a surprise, but it is never too late to quit smoking. Also, it is best to abstain from alcohol or try to reduce consumption to a limited amount.

Positive Habits. Meditate, listen to music, read, or even watch some fun movies. Keeping your mind healthy and active is greatly beneficial to your overall health.

Companionship: Many older adults are lonely, and this could lead to depression and other emotional issues which in turn negatively impact heart health. Our caregivers can provide the companionship they need and at the same time keep an eye on your loved one’s emotional well being.

To conclude it is possible to prevent or slow down heart disease. By following some common sense guidelines older adults can keep themselves as healthy as possible.