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“Healthy” Habits with Negative Effects

By Rick Cohen, 9:00 am on

Adopting healthy habits for daily living can improve health and prevent disease. However, many of the “good habits” seniors think are promoting health are actually having a negative impact. Here, Milwaukee Home Care Assistance has highlighted five “healthy” habits that can have negative effects.

1. Eating Low-Fat Foods
Most low-fat foods replace the fat with sugar and salt, producing a product that is more damaging to health than the original version. Instead of eating low-fat products, look for products that have healthy fats, such as fats from olive oil, nuts, coconut, and fish.

2. Drinking Too Much Water
There is no proven health benefit from drinking a certain amount of water each day, and drinking excessive amounts of water can cause headaches, fatigue, electrolyte imbalances, and kidney damage. Although drinking too much water is difficult to do, a good rule of thumb is to drink one glass of water with each meal as well as between meals. On hot, humid days or days your loved one exercises be sure to increase water intake by several glasses.

3. Brushing After Meals
Brushing gently twice a day is important. However, brushing teeth within 30 minutes of eating can damage tooth enamel. Excessive brushing and brushing with a toothbrush that’s too harsh also damages the enamel and causes the gums to recede.

4. Taking Supplements
Many people think that taking a daily multivitamin plus an assortment of herbal and dietary supplements will improve health. In actuality, there is no evidence to indicate that taking a daily multivitamin will boost health, and there is plenty of evidence to indicate that taking excessive amounts of vitamins can have a negative impact on health and lead to serious problems, such as liver damage. Supplements should be carefully discussed with a doctor before added to a daily regimen. 

5. Drinking Juice
Many people think that drinking fruit juice is a good way to increase their fruit intake. However, juicing removes most of the beneficial nutrients from fruit. Several studies 
have shown that people who eat a lot of fruit experience health benefits, but fruit juice itself typically does not offer any significant nutritional value.

Ensure your loved one is following healthy lifestyle habits with help from Home Care Assistance, the leading provider of hourly and live-in care in Milwaukee. Our caregivers can help with grocery shopping, meal planning and preparation, physical assistance during exercise, and offer emotional support to encourage a balanced, healthy, and high quality of life. Call our office at (414) 964-8000 and schedule a free in-home consultation to learn more.