Low Carb Diets for the Elderly
Low carb diets are suitable for persons of different ages. In fact, advocates claim that there are multiple benefits such as improved cholesterol levels, decreased blood pressure, lower risk for diabetes, stroke, and heart disease, and increased energy. Weight loss is not the only reason to adopt a low carb lifestyle.
Seniors and Atkins
The Atkins Diet is a reduced carbohydrate plan that emphasizes a menu rich in healthy fats, lean protein, and foods that are rich in fiber. One of the main benefits for seniors is that calorie counting is not required. According to Atkins, this plan helps people to fight chronic conditions and boosts their immunity. The rationale behind this plan is that foods with a high GI can cause high blood sugar and insulin levels, insulin resistance, and diabetes. Thus dieters should avoid refined carbohydrates and choose foods that are high in antioxidants and other essential nutrients.
The Carbohydrate Addict's Diet
This is yet another plan that aims to reduce the amount of insulin released by the body. Dieters can have vegetables, cheese, poultry, seafood, and meat during the first 2 weeks. Alcohol is allowed in moderation, including beer and wine. While this plan is suitable for seniors, nutrition experts warn that patients with kidney problems, cardiovascular disease, and other preexisting conditions should not try this diet.
Benefits for Seniors
Some research studies have shown that seniors who consume foods rich in carbohydrates are more likely to suffer from a mild form of cognitive impairment. In fact, they are 4 times more likely than persons who avoid foods high in sugar and simple carbohydrates. A study that confirms this was published in the Journal of Alzheimer's Disease. The findings published in the report relate to seniors aged 70 and older. The study shows that elderly people who eat a diet rich in healthy fat and protein are at a lower risk of developing cognitive impairment. While most studies have focused on the effect of low carb plans on weight loss, few studies have explored the link between carbohydrates and mental health. The problem with a high carb diet is that it has a negative impact on insulin and glucose metabolism. It is best to limit sugar intake and the consumption of drinks, sweets, cakes, and other products that are laden with sugar. Moderate intake is good because the brain uses sugar as fuel. Improved memory function is not the only benefit for seniors who have a balanced menu. According to proponents, medical practitioners included, reduced carb plans help prevent cardiovascular problems. To this, it is important to limit the amount of cholesterol and saturated fat consumed. Different studies, including the Seven Countries Study, have demonstrated that saturated fat is one of the main culprits for different chronic conditions. Low carb plans, on the other hand, recommend eating foods that contain monounsaturated fat. Thus they offer a better alternative to seniors who want to lose weight or stay healthy for longer.
Related Resources: http://www.lowcarbfoods.org/