Tips for Helping Older Adults Maintain Good Blood Sugar

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Helping Older Adults Arlington VA

Keeping your senior loved one’s blood sugar within the targets recommended by his or her primary care physician is essential for good health and staving off heart disease, diabetes, kidney problems, vision loss, and various long-term conditions. It can also enhance your parent’s mood and energy levels. Below are tips you can use to help your loved one maintain healthy blood sugar.

Serve Nutritious Meals & Snacks

The foods seniors consume can raise or lower their blood sugar and put them at risk for obesity, poor circulation, and different diseases. However, following a healthy diet could lead to healthier blood sugar and help with weight management. 

One dietary lifestyle change to make is consuming fewer bad carbohydrates and adding more good carbs to meals and snacks. Increasing fiber intake can also control blood glucose levels. These foods will pass through the digestive system with fewer challenges and stave off large spikes in blood sugar. Other healthy eating tips include counting calories, reducing salt intake, eating more vegetables, and controlling portion sizes. 

Consider hiring a professional caregiver if your loved one needs help preparing nutritious meals. If your aging loved one needs help managing everyday tasks or encouragement to adopt healthier lifestyle choices, turn to Assisting Hands Home Care, a leading provider of elder care. Assisting Hands Home Care provides professional in-home caregivers around the clock to help seniors live longer, happier, and healthier lives.

Avoid Alcohol Consumption

Too much alcohol can cause blood sugar to drop significantly, and moderate drinking can make blood sugar rise. Therefore, your loved one should avoid drinking altogether. 

If your loved one does continue to drink, he or she should never do so on an empty stomach. Drinking alcohol without eating a proper meal can cause blood sugar to drop and lead to problems like slurred speech, poor vision, and dizziness, which are often mistaken for drunkenness. Rather than consuming beer and liquor, your loved one should opt for red wine instead but limit his or her intake.

If your loved one needs encouragement to adopt healthier habits, a professional caregiver can be an ideal source of support. Not every senior has the same care needs, which means they don’t all need the same type of home care service. Arlington families can rely on Assisting Hands Home Care to provide individualized care plans to meet their elderly loved ones’ unique care needs. Our caregivers help seniors focus on healthy lifestyle habits such as eating nutritious foods, exercising regularly, and maintaining strong social ties, and we offer mentally stimulating activities that can stave off cognitive decline and delay the onset of dementia.

Monitor Blood Sugar Levels Regularly

To support your loved one’s health, blood sugar must be monitored and measured. Failing to monitor blood glucose levels can lead to different challenges and even more severe consequences, such as hospitalization. 

You can use various at-home devices to check your parent’s blood sugar, and you should make sure your loved one sees his or her primary care physician for annual testing. In some cases, medications your loved one takes could cause his or her blood glucose levels to rise, and the doctor will need to make changes that help with blood sugar management without impacting other conditions. Even if you find out your loved one’s body reacts differently to medications, you should never make medical decisions without contacting your loved one’s doctor first.

Encourage Plenty of Rest

Sleeping patterns can significantly affect blood glucose levels and overall wellbeing. Getting plenty of rest can lower stress levels, boost immune function, and decrease blood pressure. 

Keep in mind that even one night of sleep deprivation can increase insulin resistance in older adults. As a result, blood sugar levels can increase. With plenty of rest, your parent’s body will promote healthy systems and lower unhealthy blood sugar. Adequate sleep can also enhance physical health and mood and provide good memory consolidation, alertness, and more.

Helping a loved one maintain healthy blood sugar levels can be challenging. In Arlington, home care is a great help to many families. Caring for a senior loved one can be overwhelming at times, which puts family caregivers at risk for burnout. However, an in-home caregiver can take over your loved one’s care, allowing you the time you need to focus on your own health, maintain a full-time job, or care for other members of your family. Assisting Hands Home Care will work with you to customize a care plan that’s just right for your loved one’s needs. Call one of our friendly Care Managers today at 703-997-5657 to learn more about our customized care plans.