Fort Worth Home Care Blog
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Choosing a Canine Companion by Breed for Seniors

Mar 4, 2015 8:00:00 AM

A dog can be a wonderful companion, particularly for seniors that live alone. Having a dog to pet and care for can help to lower blood pressure and can promote positive emotions and experiences. For seniors that have certain medical conditions, a therapy dog can provide assistance in some situations. When selecting a dog for a senior, it may be helpful to evaluate how a dog’s breed characteristics will match up to the senior’s lifestyle and needs. Caregivers and family members may help seniors with exercise and care needs for a dog, but these needs should be considered before making the decision to obtain a certain dog breed.

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Topics: Activities and Lifestyle

Help Seniors Breathe a Little Easier with Indoor Gardens

Feb 24, 2015 8:30:00 AM

Taking care of indoor plants can help seniors to enjoy a little bit of nature while remaining comfortable in their homes. With planting season coming up soon in Fort Worth, seniors can select plants that can be transplanted to outdoor gardens or plants that can be entirely taken care of inside. Plants can help to filter the air and brighten up dreary winter days while providing seniors with a pleasant pastime.

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Topics: Activities and Lifestyle, Healthy Living

Activities for Alzheimer’s Patients

Feb 18, 2015 9:41:00 PM

Seniors that suffer from Alzheimer’s disease may benefit greatly from participating in regular activities. By engaging in the hobbies and actions that they are interested in, seniors with Alzheimer’s may increase the occurrence of positive emotional experiences and help to delay the onset of Alzheimer’s symptoms. Seniors are also less likely exhibit troubling behaviors while engaging in positive experiences. Caregivers can helps seniors with Alzheimer’s disease to participate in activities more regularly by communicating to find out what activities are of interest and by engaging in activities with seniors.

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Topics: Aging, Caregiving, Alzheimer's and Dementia, Activities and Lifestyle

Help Seniors Combat Seasonal Blues

Feb 3, 2015 8:00:00 AM

While Fort Worth may not experience the extreme cold and severe weather that some parts of the country endure during the winter, seniors may still suffer from seasonal depression and other winter woes. Daylight hours are shorter and days and nights are colder, so seniors may have a tendency to want to stay indoors and sleep longer. Caregivers and family members may help seniors combat the seasonal blues by taking certain steps.

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Topics: Aging, Healthy Living

Developing a COPD Care Plan

Jan 29, 2015 8:47:00 AM

According to the C.O.P.D. Foundation, approximately 24 million Americans are affected by C.O.P.D. C.O.P.D. stands for chronic obstructive pulmony disease. C.O.P.D. is not a specific condition, but rather a group of diseases affecting the lungs, including emphysema and chronic bronchitis. In most cases of C.O.P.D., breathing difficulties are a result of lung damage and blocked airways. There is currently no cure for C.O.P.D., but it may be possible to develop an effective C.O.P.D. care plan that helps to relieve symptoms.

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Topics: Healthy Living

Diet Considerations for Diabetes

Jan 28, 2015 5:19:00 PM

Nutrition is an essential aspect of diabetes management. Poor diet puts diabetic seniors at risk for developing many health conditions. Proper nutrition management lowers the risk of health conditions and makes blood sugar levels much easier to control. A good diet can also help seniors control weight, which can improve overall health and wellness. In order to manage diet for best health, seniors or assisting caregivers must take certain factors into consideration when meal planning.
High-Potassium-Foods
Fiber Content

Fiber is considered a carbohydrate, but does not raise blood glucose levels because it is not digestible by the body. There are two types of fiber, soluble and insoluble. Insoluble fiber helps to cleanse and move foods through the digestive tract. Soluble fiber can help to lower cholesterol and stabilize blood sugar levels.

Fiber and Diabetes

A study in the New England Journal of Medicine showed that diabetic patients that ate 50 grams of fiber per day, which is nearly twice the daily recommendation than for non-diabetic patients, blood glucose levels were significantly easier to control. However, most foods containing fiber also contain sugars and other types of carbohydrates that will raise blood glucose levels. To easily raise fiber levels without adding excessive sugar, peels can be left on fruits and vegetables and legumes can be added to many  meals.

Glycemic Index

A food’s glycemic index measures how that food raises blood glucose levels. This is important for diabetic meal planning, as foods that cause blood sugars to spike quickly can have dangerous side effects for diabetics. Foods are ranked as high, medium, or low GI. Only carbohydrate-containing foods have a GI ranking. Food such as meats and fats do not have a GI ranking.

Foods with a GI ranking lower than 55, considered low GI foods, include:

 Most fruits

 Non-starchy vegetables

 Beans

 Legumes

 Pumpernickel bread

 Sweet potatoes

 Oatmeal

Foods with a medium GI, between 56 and 69, include:

 Rice

 Whole wheat bread

 Couscous

 Spaghetti

Foods with a GI that is higher than 70, considered high GI, include:

 Sugary cereals

 White bread

 Macaroni and cheese

 Pineapples

 White rice

 White potatoes

Sweeteners

Certain sweeteners should be avoided as they can cause dangerous blood glucose spikes when consumed by diabetics. While other sweeteners may not cause glucose spikes, there is the potential for other harmful side effects such as increased cancer risks. Added sugars of any kind should be limited when planning meals for diabetic seniors. Natural sugars, such as that which is present in many fruits, do not pose the same health risks and should be used as a substitute when possible.

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Topics: Healthy Living

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