Cold and flu season is upon us yet again, which can be problematic for your senior loved ones. When an elderly loved one comes down with a cold or flu, it can lead to other medical issues or exacerbate preexisting ones. To help your senior parent or family member kick the cold and flu this season, The Grand Strand home care providers recommend incorporating the following foods into his or her diet.
When your senior loved one has a cold, he or she can incorporate oysters into his or her diet because they’re rich in zinc, which is a necessary mineral known for effectively fighting off colds. A detailed study confirming this fact was featured in a Canadian Medical Association publication. This study stated that taking zinc lozenges appeared to significantly shorten cold symptoms in adults. Oysters contain more zinc than any other food and are safer than taking zinc supplements, which may cause side effects like nausea.
Seniors only need to eat a couple of Brazil nuts each day to protect them from the flu. These creamy and tasty nuts are high in protein and selenium, a mineral that is crucial for the proper function of the immune system. This mineral may also help protect against infections and colds according to a study done at the University of North Carolina. This study stated that when mice with low levels of selenium were infected with the flu virus, high levels of inflammation were observed.
Sunflower seeds will help to reduce a senior’s chance of contracting a cold. Seniors should choose dry-roasted seeds over ones roasted in oil because they’re a healthier option. Sunflower seeds are one of the greatest natural sources of vitamin E, which is needed in order maintain lung health. A study done in Scotland found that people with diets rich in vitamins E and C had better lung capacity and produced less phlegm, which is helpful if you’re trying to fight off a cold or flu.
Seniors who eat oily fish like tuna and salmon will have good chances of warding off colds. These types of fish are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, which are compounds that are known to aid in reducing dangerous inflammation throughout the body. Frequent inflammation stops your immune system from functioning properly and it can contribute to getting colds, the flu and more serious illnesses.
Helping seniors maintain a healthy diet is half the battle when it comes to senior health and wellness. To help your senior loved one fight off cold and flu season in the comfort of home, reach out to Home Care Assistance. Our highly qualified caregivers help local seniors with various tasks like grocery shopping, housekeeping, and preparing nutritious meals to ensure your loved one receives quality care throughout the year. To learn more about our comprehensive live-in and hourly home care in The Grand Strand, call us at (843) 353-3105 today and speak with a friendly Care Manager. Be sure to schedule a free in-home consultation when you call.