While we often hear about the importance of drinking milk during childhood and adolescence, milk also offers many benefits to people in their 60s and beyond. Here are four important reasons for older adults to get more milk in their diets.
1. Provides Potassium
Potassium is a nutrient many seniors who skip dairy products lack in sufficient quantity. Too little potassium and too much sodium in the blood are risk factors for high blood pressure, also known as the “silent killer,” which is common among older adults. High blood pressure in seniors increases the risk of chronic kidney disease, heart attack, and stroke. Most seniors already consume too much salt in their diets, but boosting potassium intake can reduce this risk.
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2. Provides Glutathione
A recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found a correlation between milk intake and levels of an antioxidant called glutathione in the brains of older adults. Study participants who drank milk a short while before being tested had higher levels of glutathione, which is believed to reduce oxidative stress associated with Alzheimer’s disease and other conditions.
3. Provides Calcium
One of the primary benefits of milk is the high level of calcium, an essential nutrient for building and maintaining bone strength in seniors. Calcium is extremely important for preventing osteoporosis, especially in senior women. A single cup of nonfat milk has almost 300 mg of calcium, which is almost half the recommended daily intake for seniors.
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4. Provides Vitamin D
Humans produce vitamin D in the skin through exposure to sunlight. While the sun is the source of most of the vitamin D in the body, the skin becomes less effective at producing this essential vitamin with age. Vitamin D is important for healthy bones because it helps the body absorb calcium. Milk is a good source of vitamin D for boosting calcium intake and reducing your loved one’s risk of osteoporosis and fractures. A serving of reduced-fat milk contains 2 IUs of vitamin D, one-fifth of the recommended daily intake.
Encourage your loved one to consume milk regularly and reap these health benefits. Aging in place can present a few unique challenges for older adults. Some only require part-time assistance with exercise or meal preparation, while others are living with serious illnesses and benefit more significantly from receiving live-in care. Edmonton, AB, Home Care Assistance are leaders in the elderly in-home care industry for good reason. We tailor our care plans based on each senior’s individual needs, our caregivers continue to receive updated training in senior care as new developments arise, and we also offer comprehensive care for seniors with Alzheimer’s, dementia, and Parkinson’s. To learn more about our reliable, compassionate in-home care services, contact us at (780) 490-7337 today.