It’s widely known that consuming excess sugar has some negative effects on health, including weight gain.
As a family caregiver to an older adult, you may play a role in your aging relative’s diet. Ensuring they eat a healthy diet can lead to better overall health and prevent additional problems from cropping up. But, when it comes to avoiding too much sugar, is there a difference between drinking sugary beverages or eating foods that contain added sugar? New research suggests there is.
Study Examines Sugar in the Diet
Scientists in China and the United Kingdom recently joined together to look at how sugar consumed in liquids might differ from sugar consumed in solid foods. The scientists used mice to test their theory. They divided the mice into two groups. One group received water that contained sucrose. The other group ate food that contained added sugar. In both groups, the sugar they consumed accounted for 73 percent of their daily activities.
Over the course of eight weeks, the researchers monitored what the mice ate, their body fat, weight, and how much energy they expended. In addition, they measured the mice’s blood sugar and insulin response to see if they developed diabetes.
The results of the study showed that the mice who drank water containing sucrose gained weight while the mice who at food with sugar in it stayed leaner. In addition, the mice who drank water with sucrose also had markers that indicated their metabolic systems weren’t as healthy. They developed less tolerance to glucose and weren’t as sensitive to insulin, both of which are markers for getting diabetes.
Alternatives to Sugary Beverages
This study adds to the growing body of evidence that suggests sugary beverages are a poor choice in terms of health. If your aging relative is currently drinking sodas, fruit flavored beverages, or sports drinks, getting them to switch to healthier alternatives will help them to shed some weight and may help to prevent health problems, like diabetes.
Some good alternatives to sugary beverages are:
- Light blends of iced tea and lemonade.
- Tea, either iced or served hot. If the older adult likes their tea sweet, consider using a sugar substitute.
- Fresh-squeezed lemonade.
- Sparkling water.
- Infused water.
- Coconut water.
Home care can assist your aging relative to change their beverage choices and eating habits. A home care provider can make drinks that are healthier and contain less sugar. Home care providers can also cook meals and snacks for the older adult that don’t include added sugars.
If you or an aging loved-one are considering hiring Home Care in Broomall, PA, please talk to the caring staff at Better Care Home Health Services LLC today. Serving individuals and their families in Philadelphia, Delaware, Montgomery and Bucks counties. Call Today: (267) 766-5218