7 Foods That Can Raise a Senior's Hypertension Risk

7 Foods That Increase the Risk of Hypertension in Older Adults

By Will Reid, 9:00 am on

Abnormally high blood pressure, also known as hypertension, can lead to several health conditions such as strokes and cardiovascular disease. Therefore, it is important for seniors to keep their blood pressure within the normal range.

Seniors can face a variety of challenges as they age, many of which can be mitigated with the help of professional in-home caregivers who provide high-quality non-medical in-home care. Cincinnati families trust in Home Care Assistance to help their elderly loved ones age in place safely and comfortably.

Instead of relying solely on medications, seniors can try managing their diets to prevent hypertension. Older adults who want to lower their risk of hypertension should avoid these seven foods. 

1. Pickles

One of the biggest causes of high blood pressure is excessive sodium intake. Too much sodium affects the balance of water in the body and puts strain on the blood vessels. Since pickled cucumbers, olives, peppers, and several other vegetables are cured in a salty solution, they contain a lot of sodium.

2. Fatty Meats

Cholesterol blocks the blood vessels and raises the risk of hypertension. Foods such as chicken skin or fatty cuts of steak can increase unhealthy cholesterol levels in seniors. Therefore, seniors should switch to lean cuts of meat if they are at risk for hypertension.

3. Caffeinated Beverages

Although small doses of caffeine do not lead to blood pressure issues, excessive consumption may cause hypertension. Seniors should restrict coffee consumption to two cups a day. Other beverages that can raise blood pressure levels include green tea, sweetened iced tea, caffeinated sodas, and energy drinks.

4. Canned Goods

Some companies add salt in canned foods, which acts as a preservative. Canned soups and beans may contain a lot of salt, and they can raise a senior’s risk of hypertension. Read the labels carefully before purchasing canned goods to make sure they contain low sodium.

Excessive sodium intake can also impair cognitive abilities. If your senior loved one shows signs of Alzheimer’s disease or other type of cognitive decline, you should consult his or her doctor immediately and consider professional home care services. For reliable Alzheimer’s home care, Cincinnati families can turn to Home Care Assistance. We are a leading provider of professional memory care designed to help seniors maintain a higher quality of life. In addition to Alzheimer’s care, we also provide comprehensive dementia, Parkinson’s, and stroke care. From revolutionary care programs to compassionate and dedicated caregivers, we can meet all of your Alzheimer’s home care needs.

5. Baked Goods

Many sweet pastries, donuts, and cookies are rich in saturated fats and sodium, and they can raise blood pressure. Excessive amounts of sugar can also lead to obesity, which is another risk factor for hypertension.

6. Fatty Cheeses

Eating large quantities of cheese can increase the risk of hypertension because cheese contains plenty of salt and bad cholesterol. The unhealthiest varieties of cheese include bleu, Roquefort, cheddar, and feta cheese. Your loved one can enjoy cheese in moderation, but encourage him or her not to eat it daily.

7. Processed Meats

Lunch meat, preserved sausages, bacon, and hams contain massive amounts of sodium. Just an ounce of deli meat offers up to 300 milligrams of sodium, which can increase blood pressure. Try serving thin slices of baked chicken breast or lean, homemade roast beef.

Caring for a loved one with hypertension can be overwhelming at times. Family caregivers sometimes need a break from their caregiving responsibilities. When they need respite care, Cincinnati families can rely on professional caregivers to help their senior loved ones remain safe at home. To create a customized care plan for your aging loved one, call Home Care Assistance at 513.891.2273 today.