Cooking meals at fresh at home means you have more control over what goes into them. It also means you can get the best nutrients out of them by preparing and cooking them in certain ways. This is important for all the family, but even more so for elderly relatives who need extra help to stay healthy and mentally fit. If you have an elderly relative that you are doing some of the cooking for then read on for some great tips on how to prepare healthy meals. And if they want to remain independent and do the cooking themselves, then pass them on too!
Looking After The Elderly
It may be that you are caring for an elderly relative that still wants to live in their home and keep some of their independence. If so, it’s so much better for them to know how to cook in a healthier way, or how you can help by doing the same. And if they are living alone and you are just popping in to help out, take a look here http://homehealthgear.com/the-silver-mother/ for a great device that can keep an eye on them when you are not there.
Healthier Cooking Methods
If you are using meat, always pick choice or select grades over prime. And for better heart health always trim off the fatty edges before cooking. For chicken use the lighter breast meat rather than opting for the darker legs or thighs. And when it comes to dairy and cheese try preparing your meals with low-fat or fat-free products instead. Also be mindful of salt. Pre-packaged seasoning and microwave meals contain a lot of salts. So be sure to use fresh herbs instead and swap regular cooking oil for non-fat cooking spray. Find out here http://www.thankyourbody.com/vegetable-oils/ why vegetable oils are bad for health. And avoid frying food as this puts in extra fats and calories that are not needed. Instead, try stir-frying in a Wok, grilling, boiling and steaming.
Tomatoes contain lycopene which is believed to offer protection from certain cancers and heart disease. In order to get the most lycopene out of your tomatoes always make sure you cook them rather than eating them raw. Or opt for a tin of canned tomatoes as these are known to contain even more lycopene which is released while they are in the can. Carrots contain a healthy dose of beta-carotene, and this goes up even more when they are eaten cooked rather than raw. The body converts beta carotene into Vitamin A in the body, and this beneficial for normal iron metabolism, better vision, and immunity to certain diseases. Spinach, on the other hand, should be eaten raw. It is rich in potassium which is good for the elderly as it lowers the blood pressure. It’s also abundant in Vitamin A and C and contains folate which is also essential for a healthy immune system. Try it fresh in salads, sandwiches, and soups.
Chopping Up And Onion And Soaking Seeds And Grains
It is great to add onion and garlic to the meals you are cooking as they are good at fighting disease and building immunity, both important to the elderly. But chop, crush and blend your onions and garlic to get the most nutrients out of them. This ensures that the alliinase is released. This enzyme helps fight disease when it enters our body. And if you are using grains and things such as chia seeds for a healthier diet always make sure to soak them first. Soaking helps to release and get rid of the phytates in these foods. Phytates aren’t dangerous, but they can block the absorption of iron, zinc, calcium and magnesium. So by soaking the grains first, you will get the best nutrient value out of them.