Cholesterol 101 for a Senior's Heart
Skip main navigation
Serving Newark and surrounding areas.
Type Size
Serving Newark and surrounding areas.
Past main navigation Contact Us

Cholesterol 101 for a Senior's Heart

Cholesterol plays an integral role in our overall health. It impacts everything from brain function to heart health. With age, cholesterol management becomes even more necessary. Learning about the basics of cholesterol - the good, the bad, and its effects on the heart will help you make the right choices in maintaining the cardiovascular wellness of your senior loved ones.

The Basics of Cholesterol

Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance found in every cell of the body. It is instrumental in generating hormones, vitamin D, and substances that aid digestion. Cholesterol travels through the bloodstream in small packages called lipoproteins, composed of fat on the inside and proteins on the outside.

There are two types of lipoproteins - Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) and High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL). LDL, often known as "bad" cholesterol, makes up most of the body's cholesterol. Elevated levels of LDL can lead to heart disease. HDL, or "good" cholesterol, absorbs unhealthy cholesterol and carries it back to the liver, which flushes it from the body.

Impact of Cholesterol on Heart Health

High levels of LDL can lead to atherosclerosis, a buildup of cholesterol and other substances in your arteries. The condition increases the risk of heart disease and stroke. The body's chemistry changes with age, where bad LDL cholesterol gets elevated, and good HDL cholesterol levels decrease. This shift makes seniors more susceptible to cardiovascular complications, emphasizing the need for proper cholesterol management.

Practical Tips for Managing Cholesterol

Keeping your cholesterol levels under control is achievable with the right approach. A strategy that includes proper diet, regular exercise, and routine health checks can make a difference.

What you eat plays a significant role in managing cholesterol. Include fiber-rich foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains in your meals to keep the LDL levels low. Omega-3 fatty acids, found in fatty fish like salmon and tuna, can also lower your cholesterol levels. On the other hand, avoid saturated fats found in red meat and full-fat dairy products, as they raise your cholesterol levels.

Regular physical activity can aid in cholesterol management. Walking, swimming, or cycling can raise HDL cholesterol and lower LDL cholesterol. However, seniors should be mindful of their limitations and consult their healthcare provider before starting a new exercise regimen.

Routine health checks are also vital. Regular cholesterol checks can help you stay informed about your health status and make the necessary adjustments to your lifestyle.

Discover Premium Senior Care Services

Cholesterol management is vital for seniors, given its potential impact on heart health. Adopting a balanced diet, incorporating regular physical activity, and staying on top of health checks can go a long way in keeping cholesterol levels in check. 

If you’re in Newark, Wilmington, Bear, and New Castle County and need help with daily living activities as you age in place, Senior Helpers Northern Delaware is here to help you. We provide professional in-home care services for older adults and can help with everything from light chores to medication reminders and meal preparation. Contact us today to learn more about our services.