There are a number of reasons people require Long Term Care. Diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s are among the most common. However, other highly preventable conditions, like heart disease and obesity, are also at the top of the list for reasons people need Long Term Care.

Just because you have Long Term Care Insurance doesn’t mean you want to use it. In fact, it would be ideal if you never had to make a Long Term Care claim. One way of avoiding preventable conditions like obesity and cardiovascular disease is by nourishing your body with the right foods.

When most people hear the word “diet”, they think of famous 10-step diet plans, weight loss centers, and diet pills. However, making changes in your diet isn’t the same thing as “going on a diet”. That’s a good thing, considering most people find it easier to stick to small diet changes over extreme ones. Making small adjustments to your diet, and sticking to them, can have a big impact on your health!

6 Small Diet Changes to Make Now

1) Tone down the sweet tooth small diet changes

Refined sugars are sugars that have undergone processing and are little more than empty calories. Unfortunately,  they are packed into a majority of the foods in grocery stores. Desserts, bread, peanut butter, yogurt, the list goes on and on. It is tough to find processed, packaged foods that don’t contain refined sugars. While it’s nearly impossible to completely cut them out, it is very simple to significantly cut back on your intake without feeling deprived. Instead of eating candy, eat fruit. Fruit contains natural sugars that are packed with nutrients and can still satisfy your cravings for sweets.

2) Switch your proteins

Instead of eating red meat, eat poultry or fish. Chicken, turkey, and fish are much leaner sources of protein than red meats. Red meat has also been linked to heart disease by numerous research studies and trials. Due to the high amount of chemicals, fossil fuels, and waste associated with animal products, it has also been proven to have a highly negative effect on the environment. If possible, make one day a week meatless. “Meatless Monday” is a trend that has recently caught on. Give it a try!

3) Eyeing that fast food spot? Keep driving.

No questions here. Nearly every one knows that fast food is terrible for you. The colossal amount of calories packed into a small, overly processed meal. The quality of meat in fast food restaurants has come into question multiple times over the past several years, with some restaurants discovered to be serving “pink slime” and others serving horse meat. It’s best, whenever possible, to cook meals yourself so you have control over what goes into it and what is done with it.

4) Cut back your sodium intake

The average American has sodium intake levels much higher than that which is recommended. We need sodium for healthy organ functions, but too much and our arteries start to clog, causing heart disease and other illnesses. Frozen foods and canned soups are a couple of the products in grocery stores that are stuffed with sodium. Even labels like “Reduced Sodium” might not mean a whole lot. Make sure to check labels and if your food needs salt, just use a pinch.

small diet changes5) Don’t drink your calories

Most sugary drinks like soda, sweet tea, sports drinks, and even processed, packaged fruit juices hold no nutritional value. They fill your body with empty calories and chemicals while leaving you hungry for real food. Some people really love soda, and that’s okay. Moderation is the key to a healthy lifestyle. If you can’t give it up cold turkey, try replacing one sugary drink a day with water. You will feel less hungry and less jittery.

6) Replace bad fats with good fats

Bad fats, or saturated fats, are fats that are in foods like cheeseburgers potato chips, and ice cream. These fats are detrimental to your health, which can cause high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and even lead to obesity and heart disease. Good fats, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats, are fats that reduce your risk of disease. Examples of good fats are nuts, avocados, salmon, and olive oil. These foods have no trans fats and provide your body with nutrients like omega 3 fatty acids, that are beneficial to your health. Instead of putting butter on bread, use olive oil. Instead of eating red meat, have a salmon filet. Your body will thank you.

Protect Your Health

These are just a few tips that can help you take control of your diet and health without making drastic changes. Staying healthy is key to living a long life and avoiding hospitals and nursing homes. Fueling your body with the right foods makes a big difference in the way your body functions.

Unfortunately, even if we opt to make good lifestyle choices, we can’t have 100% control over our health. That is why it’s important to plan for future health needs. Long Term Care Insurance provides people with peace of mind, knowing that should they ever require Long Term Care, their retirement nest egg is guarded from the high cost of Long Term Care like nursing homes, assisted living facilities, or in-home care.

At LTC Tree, we help our clients shop the market. We mail you a packet of information with information on the top 6-7 Long Term Care Insurance companies. You can take your time, review your options, and compare benefits. We will gladly guide you through the differences between companies and policies. LTC Tree works hard to ensure consumers are informed about their Long Term Care Insurance options and make a decision that fits their specific needs and lifestyle.

Have a question about Long Term Care Insurance? Read more here.

Need a quote? Call us at 1-800-800-6139 or fill out our online form.