Best Low – Carbohydrate Diets For Seniors

There are so many low carb diets out there today, that it can be rather confusing to tell the difference between them and to choose which one is best for you. This is especially true for senior citizens, as they are more susceptible to developing physical and neurological health conditions.

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Low carb diets possess a long list of health benefits for people of all ages, including seniors. If followed correctly, it can boost your energy, mood and overall well being, significantly improve or reduce the risk of diabetes by lowering blood sugar levels and stabilizing insulin production, raises good cholesterol (HDL) , reduces bad cholesterol (LDL), and helps you lose weight a bit faster and easier in conjunction with daily exercise. Additionally, it can also potentially protect you from Alzheimers and other forms of Dementia, heart disease, high blood pressure, and more.

The Differences Between Low - Carb Diets And The Keto Diet

One of the biggest misconceptions going around today is that low carb always means the keto diet. This is completely false. Low carb and keto do share some similarities, but there are two major differences – Classic low carb diets mainly focus on lean proteins and allow you up to around 100 grams of carbs per day, while keto focuses on fats and is extremely low carb. It’s very restrictive, cutting out virtually all the carbs and allowing no more than 20 grams per day.

With that being said, the following have been ranked as the best low – carbohydrate diets for seniors, according to certified dieticians.

The DASH Diet

DASH stands for dietary approaches to stop hypertension. It is fully approved and promoted by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute. While it can control blood sugar levels and promote weight loss, the main goal of this diet is to reduce or prevent hypertension, also known as high blood pressure.
This diet achieves this by making one dietary change: You’re limited to a max of 2,300 mg of sodium per day to start off, then gradually bring it down. Otherwise, DASH focuses on the foods you’ve always been told to eat more of: fruits, veggies, whole grains, lean proteins and low-fat dairy, which are all rich in essential nutrients that fight high blood pressure, including potassium, calcium, magnesium and fiber.

As an added bonus, the DASH diet is also balanced, adaptable, and can be sustained long term. It strongly discourages foods high in saturated fat, such as fatty meats, full-fat dairy foods, tropical oils and sugar-sweetened beverages.

The Mediterranean Diet

After years of intensive research and conclusive findings, this low carb and plant-based diet puts an emphasis on essential and unsaturated fatty acids. It has proven to be incredibly good for overall well-being, especially for seniors. <p. The Mediterranean diet is rich in fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fish and seafood, nuts, legumes, and olive oil. With this diet, you’ll only eat red meat and sugary foods occasionally, and dairy products are allowed in moderation as well. This style of eating will ensure that you have very little room for processed foods. When you look at your plate, it should be bursting with different colors. Traditional lean proteins like chicken and eggs will be more of a side dish, while produce and fatty fish, such as salmon, sardines, mackerel and tuna, will receive highest priority.

One of the nicest things that people love about the Mediterranean diet is that it allows a moderate amount of red wine per day, as this has shown to have wonderful health benefits. You are allowed up to 5 ounces (oz) each day, which is around one glass. While a daily glass of wine is not obligated for this eating plan, it is certainly encouraged.

The Sugar Busters Diet

The Sugar Busters eating plan is much like the mediterranean with some twists. It totally eliminates added sugars, reduces carbohydrates, and emphasizes the consumption of low glycemic index (GI) fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, low-fat dairy products, and healthy fats. The program is based on the fact that consuming foods with a low glycemic index (GI) can help maintain optimal blood sugar levels, making this diet suitable and helpful for seniors who are diabetic or susceptible to developing it.

The rules regarding the Sugar Busters diet seem fairly straightforward and easy to sustain long term, and allows some flexibility with the percentages as well. For instance, the creators of the program state that you can consume as much as 50 – 55 percent of calories from carbs. The Sugar Busters diet doesn’t limit you on specific portion measurements either, but it does have three important rules: you may only consume one reasonably full plate of food at mealtime, there’s no going back for seconds, and no eating or snacking after 8pm. Better yet, followers of the Sugar Busters diet can consume the allowed foods throughout the daytime hours when they feel genuinely hungry. It is also strongly suggested to only consume the permitted fruits and juices after the proteins and produce, so your insulin levels do not spike.

Final Thoughts

It’s worth noting that low carb diets may not be suitable or safe for every senior. Certain health conditions like liver and kidney problems can make it dangerous to consume a lot of fats and proteins everyday. So before you start any low carb diet plan, consult with your primary healthcare provider first.

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