Archive for the ‘Senior Health’ Category

Discuss Dementia with Dr. Gandhi

Dr. Gandhi will discuss dementia at the Timbers of Shorewood retirement community. Bhavesh Gandhi, M.D. will present a seminar titled “Dementia” at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 18, at the Timbers of Shorewood retirement community, 1100 N. River Road.

There are many causes of memory loss, and forgetfulness or confusion was once considered a natural part of aging. While some memory loss may be expected as a person ages, those affected with dementia suffer memory loss and other problems with thinking that interfere with the ability to live daily life.

Dementia is the progressive deterioration in the cognitive functions. It is a set of signs and symptoms that can be caused by a number of diseases, including Alzheimer’s, stroke and even high glucose.

Signs of dementia include:
•    impaired judgment
•    inappropriate behavior
•    hallucinations, paranoia and agitation
•    disorientation to time and place
•    gait, motor and balance problems
•    difficulty with abstract thinking
•    memory loss

There are some clear differences between normal aging and the onset of dementia. An aging individual may need a moment to remember directions, but one with dementia will get lost in familiar places. In addition, someone with dementia will have difficulty carrying on a conversation and show a decreased interest in social activities.

Most types of dementia cannot be cured, but treatment options are available to help with the symptoms.
Dr. Gandhi has more than six years of experience as a practicing physician and is a geriatric specialist. He is board certified in family medicine and affiliated with the Provena Saint Joseph Medical Center in Joliet.

The Timbers of Shorewood is a rental retirement community which provides independent and assisted living apartments and a full schedule of activities and services. Residents, whose needs may change, are able to stay in the same place and receive appropriate care.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, call Shelly Goggins at 815-609-0669.


Sun & Medication seminar with Newsome

A sun saftey seminar will be led by Newsome Home Health at the Timbers of Shorewood retirement community. A representative from Newsome Home Health will present a seminar titled “Sun and Medication” at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Aug.13, at The Timbers of Shorewood, 1100 N. River Rd., Shorewood.

Everyone enjoys a warm sunny day. However, when the temperature climbs, it could pose a potential risk for seniors. Of the 200 Americans who die of heat-related complications each summer, most are over 50.

As seniors age, they become less sensitive to heat and the feeling of thirst. According to the American Geriatric Society’s Foundation for Health in Aging (FHIA), when the temperature hits the low 90s, it can be very dangerous to senior citizens.

Seniors are susceptible to intense heat because their bodies may be less efficient than younger adults to adequately respond to rising temperatures. Also, seniors are more likely to have medical conditions that change normal body responses to heat and they are more likely to take prescription medicines that may weaken the body’s ability to regulate its temperature or prevent perspiration.

Signs of possible heat illness in seniors include:
•    heavy sweating
•    paleness
•    muscle cramps
•    fatigue
•    weakness
•    dizziness
•    headache
•    nausea or vomiting
•    fainting
•    fast and weak pulse rate
•    fast and shallow breathing
It is important for seniors to stay indoors with air conditioning during excessive heat; fans are not sufficient. To help cool down, take cool showers, baths or sponge baths. If outside, avoid the sun as much as possible and wear hats, sunglasses and lightweight, light-colored, loose-fitting clothing. In addition, use SPF 30 or higher sunscreen and avoid strenuous activity.

Some medications whose side effects include loss of fluid and electrolytes from the body can prove to be dangerous, and diurects, antibiotics and other medications can slow down the body’s natural capacity to control body temperature. Anyone taking medications should consult with a doctor about the possible side effects due to excessive heat before sun exposure.

Newsome Home Health offers nursing, social work, aides and physical, occupational and speech therapy services at the Oak Park Arms.

The Timbers of Shorewood is a rental retirement community which provides independent and assisted living apartments and a full schedule of activities and services. Furnished apartments are also available for a short-term stay – a weekend, a week, a month or longer.

The event is open to the public and admission is free. For more information, call Shelly Goggins at 815-609-0669.


Quality of Life Seminar: Healthcare Fraud

Healthcare Fraud seminar at the Timbers of Shorewood retirement community. The Illinois Senior Medicare Patrol (SMP) will present a free program titled “Healthcare Fraud” at 3 p.m. Wednesday, June 12, at The Timbers of Shorewood retirement community, 1100 N. River Rd., Shorewood. The public is invited.

Senior citizens are often targets of Medicare schemes for a variety of reasons, such as that they are most likely to have a nest egg, own their own home and/or have excellent credit. In addition, people who grew up in the 1930s – 1950s were generally raised to be polite and trusting, making it easier for con artists to persuade them.

Examples of health care fraud and waste include:

•    equipment or insurance plan providers tricking seniors into giving up personal information (including Medicare numbers) on “sign in” sheets
•    Medicare summary notices showing billing for services or supplies that were never received equipment supplies providing expensive “scooter” wheelchairs not ordered by a physician or needed by the beneficiary
•    luring beneficiaries into providing their Medicare numbers for “free” services only to later bill Medicare
•    kickbacks – paying beneficiaries to receive service from a particular provider or company

Statistics indicate that 10 cents of every dollar spent on health care goes toward paying for fraudulent health care claims. Older Americans are less likely to report a fraud because they don’t know who to report it to or are embarrassed by having been scammed. In addition, because it may take weeks or even months before a fraud is realized it is difficult to recall details making which makes for a weak case.

It is important people understand how to:

•    protect their identity
•    read their Medicare summary notices
•    avoid falling for scams

People should never sign blank insurance claim forms or give blanket authorization to a medical provider to bill for services rendered. Also people should never do business with door-to-door or telephone salespeople who offer free services or medical equipment. Records should be kept of all health care appointments and people should maintain awareness of any equipment ordered by a physician.

The SMP is an organization comprised of trained volunteers focused on educating consumers about health care fraud, waste and abuse. They strive to teach the public how to protect Medicare numbers, review Medicare statements to spot false charges, detect errors and report suspected fraud.

More than 30,000 active volunteers have educated nearly 27 million people since 1997 through one-on-one sessions and group seminars. To date, an estimated $106 million in savings is attributed to SMP’s efforts in healthcare fraud prevention.

The Timbers of Shorewood is a rental retirement community which provides independent and assisted living apartments and a full schedule of activities and services. Furnished apartments are also available for a short-term stay – a weekend, a week, a month or longer.

The event is free and open to the public. For more information or to reserve a seat, call Shelly Goggins at 815-609-0669.


Dentures Seminar with Dr. Sallis

A dentures seminar will be held by Dr. Sallis at the Timbers of Shorewood retirement community. Carlos Sallis, DDS, will hold a “Dentures Seminar” at 2 p.m. Tuesday, April 16, in the ballroom at the Timbers of Shorewood retirement community, 1100 N. River Road. This is a free event and is open to the public.

Like all other body parts, teeth weaken and decay as people age. Certain medical conditions or prescription medications can also cause oral health issues and accelerate tooth loss.

Nearly one in four people age 65 and over have lost all of their teeth, and approximately 40 percent of seniors wear either a full or partial set of dentures – a removable set of false teeth.

Even though a person may not have real teeth left, regular dental checkups are still necessary because oral disease can spread in areas not easily seen, like gum disease underneath dentures. Mouth diseases, if left untreated, can then spread to other parts of the body.

Maintenance of proper oral care at home is just as important with the use of dentures, if not more so. Real teeth have bacteria fighting elements that resist infections, but dentures do not. Dentures do, however, have microscopic dents and crevices which cannot be cleaned by regular brushing.

Denture-wearers should always:
•    Clean and brush every day with toothpaste and a toothbrush specially designed for dentures.
•    Soak dentures at night, because they may lose their shape if they dry out.
•    Store dentures in a safe place; they are delicate and may easily break.

Although some people wear their first set of dentures for an average of 17 years, it is suggested that they either be replaced or adjusted every five to seven years.

For more than 32 years Dr. Sallis has been practicing dentistry in both Illinois and Wisconsin. He is a general dentist with a special focus in treating geriatric patients with removable dental prosthetics (dentures). He is a graduate of Cornell College in Mount Vernon, Iowa, and finished his studies in 1980 at the College of Dentistry at the University of Illinois.

Dr. Sallis is a member of the American Dental Association, Chicago Dental Society, Illinois Dental Society, and is board certified in enteral sedation by the American Dental Association of Anesthesiology.

Formerly the executive dental consultant with GlaxoSmithKline, Inc., and the client relations manager for Milestone Scientific, Inc., Dr. Sallis enjoys trail bicycling, walking, skiing, swimming, range shooting and off-road go-karting in his free time.

The Timbers of Shorewood is a rental retirement community which provides independent and assisted living apartments and a full schedule of activities and services. Residents, whose needs may change, are able to stay in the same place and receive appropriate care.

This event is free and open to the public. For more information, call Shelly Goggins at 815-609-0669.


Quality of Life Seminar: Tips for Cold & Flu Season

A health professional will present a program about cold and flu awareness at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 9, at The Timbers of Shorewood retirement community, 1100 N. River Rd., Shorewood.

Flu season can begin as early as October, and last as late as May. For this reason, October or November is the best time to get vaccinated.

Symptoms of the flu may include:
•    Fever (usually high)
•    Headache
•    Extreme Tiredness
•    Dry Cough
•    Sore Throat
•    Runny or Stuffy Nose
•    Muscle Aches

Stomach symptoms like nausea, vomiting and diarrhea may occur, though it is more common in children.

Complications of the flu can include:
•    Pneumonia
•    Dehydration
•    Worsening of chronic medical conditions like asthma, emphysema and heart disease

Colds usually last for about a week. Symptoms of a cold may include:
•    Runny nose
•    Congestion
•    Sneezing
•    Weakened sense of taste and smell
•    Scratchy throat
•    Cough

Cold and flu viruses enter the body through the mucous membranes of the eyes, nose or mouth. Every time you touch your hand to one of these areas you could be infecting yourself. It is important to wash your hands often

The Timbers of Shorewood is a rental retirement community which provides independent and assisted living apartments and a full schedule of activities and services. Furnished apartments are also available for a short-term stay – a weekend, a week, a month or longer.

The program is open to the public and admission is free. For more information or to register, call Shelly Goggins at 815-609-0669.


Aid and Attendance seminar with Robert Hart

Robert Hart of the American Association for Wartime Veterans (AAWV) will present a free informational seminar titled, “Aid and Attendance,” at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 25, at The Timbers of Shorewood, 1100 N. River Rd.

Hart will explain the benefits which are available to qualifying veterans, widowed spouses or disabled adult children.

Once awarded Aid and Attendance or Housebound status, veterans may obtain as much as $1,703 a month, surviving spouses $1,094 a month, and existing couples $2,019 a month. In addition to income, they may qualify for free medications, medical equipment, incontinence supplies, glasses and hearing aids.

Hart will explain eligibility and how to initiate a claim. For example, the claimant’s physician must declare the veteran as housebound and in need of assistance from another individual which may include services offered by assisted living. Also the veteran must have served at least 90 days active duty with one day of the 90 during a war period.

Founded in 2002, AAWV is a privately held community outreach service formed to provide information about the improved pension program to wartime veterans and surviving spouses. To date, approximately $2.6 million a month is being paid in benefits as a result of AAWV’s efforts. There is no charge for AAWV’s services.

The Timbers of Shorewood is a rental retirement community which provides independent and assisted living apartments and a full schedule of activities and services. Residents, whose needs may change, are able to stay in the same place and receive appropriate care.

This seminar is free and open to the public. For more information, call Shelly Goggins at 815-609-0669.

What is Aid and Attendance? A veteran who is determined by VA to be in need of the regular aid and assistance of another person, or a veteran who is permanently housebound, may be entitled to additional compensation or pension payments. A veteran evaluated at 30 % or more disabled is entitled to receive an additional payment for a spouse who is in need of the aid and attendance of another person.

Basic Qualifications:

•    Discharged from service under other than dishonorable conditions
•    Served 90 days or more of active duty with at least 1 day during a period of war
•    Monthly income is less than the Aid and Attendance benefit
•    Less than $80,000 in countable assets (doesn’t include home, life insurance or prepaid funeral plans)
•    Have a diagnosis that requires supportive care
•    65 years of age or older
•    Surviving spouse (if married at the time of death)

Periods of Service:

•    WWI – 04/16/17 to 11/11/18
•    WWII – 12/07/41 to 12/31/46
•    Korea – 06/27/50 to 01/31/55
•    Vietnam (inside) – 02/28/61 to 05/07/75
•    Vietnam (outside) – 05/07/57 to 08/05/64


“Where’s my memory?” ask seniors in Shorewood

Hmmm. I misplaced my memory. Everyone “of a certain age” knows the frustration and/or embarrassment of being unable to remember something – names, book titles, where the keys are, etc. Most of this is normal, and certainly it’s not a reason for panic.

According to, information is stored in different parts of your memory like this:

• Information stored in recent memory may include what you ate for breakfast this morning.
• Information stored in the short-term memory may include the name of a person you met moments ago.
• Information stored in the remote or long-term memory includes things that you stored in your memory years ago, such as memories of childhood.

It is true that a person loses brain cells from the time of young adulthood. The body, too, starts to make less of the chemicals brain cells need to work. The older you are, the more these changes can affect your memory. Also aging may affect memory by changing the way the brain stores information and by making it harder to recall stored information. Short-term and remote memories aren’t usually affected by aging. But recent memory may be affected.
At least half of those over age 65 say that they are more forgetful than they were when they were younger, experiencing “senior moments” about things like where they put things or recalling somebody’s name. Forgetting a friend’s name or not remembering a lunch date is something that most people without dementia do from time to time.

Of course, increasing forgetfulness should be checked out by the doctor. But for the annoying absentmindedness that plagues almost all older adults, remember (ha!) to keep a sense of humor.
Six Great Tips to Boost Memory: ( )

• Puzzle power: Brain activities like crossword puzzles or Sudoku can help keep the mind clear and focused.
• Lifelong learning: Stimulating mental activities like attending a lecture can aid in memory retention.
• Tea time: Have a cup or two of green tea. Studies have shown that green tea extracts improves cognition and spatial awareness in rats.
• Breathe out: Don’t stress. Some of the most common memory zaps include stress and anxiety. Activities like reading or meditation can help the brain stay clear.
• Social butterfly: Maintain strong social ties through social groups to help preserve memory.
• Get moving: Daily exercise for half an hour a day such as walking or jogging can help improve memory.



Seniors Assess Denture Care

You may have no teeth, but you still need to see the dentist. Bummer, right? According to, gum care is important – teeth or no teeth – and a dental professional needs to make certain that dentures fit properly. They may need to be relined, and they may no longer fit correctly.

Of course, dentures are the last resort, and every effort should be made to keep permanent teeth as long as possible. Even if you have lost some teeth, a partial denture is preferable to removal of all remaining teeth if those teeth are still in acceptable condition.
A denture is a removable replacement for missing teeth and surrounding tissues. Two types of dentures are available – complete and partial dentures. Complete dentures are used when all the teeth are missing, while partial dentures are used when some natural teeth remain.

According to, complete dentures can be either “conventional” or “immediate.” Made after the teeth have been removed and the gum tissue has begun to heal, a conventional denture is ready for placement in the mouth about 8 to 12 weeks after the teeth have been removed.

Unlike conventional dentures, immediate dentures are made in advance and can be positioned as soon as the teeth are removed. As a result, the wearer does not have to be without teeth during the healing period.

 However, bones and gums shrink over time, especially during the healing period following tooth removal. Therefore a disadvantage of immediate dentures compared with conventional dentures is that they require more adjustments to fit properly during the healing process and generally should only be considered a temporary solution until conventional dentures can be made.

A removable partial denture or bridge usually consists of replacement teeth attached to a pink or gum-colored plastic base, which is connected by metal framework that holds the denture in place in the mouth. Partial dentures are used when one or more natural teeth remain in the upper or lower jaw. A fixed (permanent) bridge replaces one or more teeth by placing crowns on the teeth on either side of the space and attaching artificial teeth to them. This “bridge” is then cemented into place. Not only does a partial denture fill in the spaces created by missing teeth, it prevents other teeth from changing position. A precision partial denture is removable and has internal attachments rather than clasps that attach to the adjacent crowns. This is a more natural-looking appliance.

Are There Alternatives to Dentures?

Yes, dental implants can be used to support permanently cemented bridges, eliminating the need for a denture. The cost is usually greater, but the implants and bridges more closely resemble the feel of real teeth. Dental implants are becoming the alternative to dentures but not everyone is a candidate for implants. Consult your dentist for advice.

Does Insurance Cover the Cost of Dentures?

Most dental insurance providers cover some or all of the cost of dentures. However, contact your company to find out the specifics of what they will cover.

How Are Dentures Made?

The denture development process takes about three weeks to 1.5 months and several appointments. Once your dentist or prosthodontist (a dentist who specializes in the restoration and replacement of teeth) determines what type of appliance is best for you, the general steps are to:

1. Make a series of impressions of your jaw and take measurements of how your jaws relate to one another and how much space is between them.

2. Create models, wax forms, and/or plastic patterns in the exact shape and position of the denture to be made. You will “try in” this model several times and the denture will be assessed for color, shape, and fit before the final denture is cast.

3. Cast a final denture

4. Adjustments will be made as necessary

A dozen facts about dentures (

1. Dentures don’t last forever.

2. Even if dentures fit perfectly, you should still see a dental professional regularly.

3. No one has to know you’re wearing dentures.

4. Denture wearers can eat more normally.

5. Denture wearers can speak more clearly.

6. Adhesives can play a role in denture’s fit and comfort.

 7. Over-the-counter and prescription medications can affect dentures.

8. Don’t assume regular denture care is too costly.

9. Never try to make your own denture repairs.

 10. With planning, denture corrections can often be made in one day.

 11. Don’t avoid replacing your denture just because you don’t want to go through another long adjustment period.

12. All dentures are not created equal. If you look for the lowest price, you’ll get what you pay for.





Seniors in Shorewood tackle arthritis

Oh my aching knee… so says someone with arthritis – one of the most prevalent chronic health problems in America. According to, 46 million people suffer from it. That’s one in five adults. That’s a lot.

Arthritis strikes more women than men, and half of those Americans with arthritis don’t think anything can be done to help them. Of course, Baby Boomers are now at prime risk. More than half those affected are under age 65.
Arthritis is the inflammation of one or more joints which results in pain, swelling, stiffness, and limited movement. There are over 100 different types of arthritis.

Arthritis involves the breakdown of cartilage. Cartilage normally protects the joint, allowing for smooth movement. Cartilage also absorbs shock when pressure is placed on the joint, like when a person walks. Without the usual amount of cartilage, the bones rub together, causing pain, swelling (inflammation), and stiffness.

Osteoarthritis is the most common type and is more likely to occur with aging. It may be felt in any joint, but according to Mayo Clinic, (  the most common affected joints are hands, hips, knees, neck and lower back.
Factors that increase the risk of osteoarthritis include older age, gender, bone deformities, joint injuries, obesity, and certain occupations that involve repetitive stress on a particular joint. Also people with gout, rheumatoid arthritis, Paget’s disease of bone or septic arthritis are at increased risk of developing osteoarthritis.

The bad news is osteoarthritis gradually worsens with time, and no cure exists. But osteoarthritis treatments can relieve pain and help maintain an active lifestyle.

The following are ideas that can help a great deal:

  • If you’re experiencing pain or inflammation in your joint, rest it for 12 to 24 hours. Find activities that don’t require repetitive movement. Try taking a 10-minute break every hour.
  • With the doctor’s approval, get regular exercise. Stick to gentle exercises, such as walking, biking or swimming. Exercise can increase endurance and strengthen the muscles around the joint, making the joint more stable. Avoid exercising tender, injured or swollen joints. If you feel new joint pain, stop. New pain that lasts more than two hours after you exercise probably means you’ve overdone it.
  • Being overweight or obese increases the stress on your weight-bearing joints, such as your knees and your hips. Even a small amount of weight loss can relieve some pressure and reduce your pain. Aim to lose 1 or 2 pounds a week, at most. Most people combine changes in their diet with increased exercise.
  • Both heat and cold can relieve pain in your joint. Heat also relieves stiffness and cold can relieve muscle spasms. Soothe a painful joint with heat using a heating pad, hot water bottle or warm bath. Heat should be warm, not hot. Apply heat for 20 minutes several times a day. Cool the pain in your joint with cold treatments such as with ice packs. You can use cold treatments several times a day, but don’t use cold treatments if you have poor circulation or numbness.
  • Creams and gels available at the drugstore may provide temporary relief from osteoarthritis pain. Some creams numb the pain by creating a hot or cool sensation. Other creams contain medications, such as aspirin-like compounds, that are absorbed into your skin. Pain creams work best on joints that are close the surface of your skin, such as your knees and fingers.
  • Assistive devices can make it easier to go about your day without stressing your painful joint. A cane may take weight off your knee or hip as you walk. Gripping and grabbing tools may make it easier to work in the kitchen if you have osteoarthritis in your fingers. Your doctor or occupational therapist may have ideas about what sorts of assistive devices may be helpful to you. Catalogs and medical supply stores also may be places to look for ideas.

And finally, learn about living your best life with arthritis. Understand the challenges and changes arthritis brings on and how they affect relationships and families. Find practical solutions to make daily activities easier as well as the information you need to deal with health insurance and the cost of care.




Seniors in Shorewood follow the DASH diet

The DASH diet is making news and with good reason. It is bringing down the blood pressures of many many people. By following the DASH diet, a person can  reduce blood pressure by a few points in just two weeks. Over time, blood pressure could drop by eight to 14 points, and this can make a significant difference in health risks.

According to mayo clinic, DASH stands for Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension. The plan calls for reduced sodium in the diet and says to eat a variety of foods rich in nutrients that help lower blood pressure such as potassium, calcium and magnesium. In addition, it emphasizes portion size, eating a variety of foods and getting the right amount of nutrients.

This eating plan received the top ranking from an expert panel in US New & World Reports published in June, 2011 (, and it is endorsed by the American Heart Association, The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (one of the National Institutes of Health, of the US Department of Health and Human Services), and a host of other respected health organizations.

Because the DASH diet is a healthy way of eating, it offers health benefits besides lowering blood pressure. It may offer protection against osteoporosis, cancer, heart disease, stroke and diabetes. And while the DASH diet is not a weight-loss program, many people do lose unwanted pounds because it offers guidance toward healthier meals and snacks.

In a nutshell, the DASH eating plan advocates food choices that are low in saturated fat, cholesterol, and total fat. Fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy foods, whole-grain products, nuts, poultry, and fish are strongly promoted. The diet also includes some fish, poultry and legumes. You can eat red meat, sweets and fats in small amounts.

Adopting the DASH, or any life-prolonging eating plan, requires a commitment to living it, not dabbling in it. The best likelihood of success is making the changeover gradually. According to, the following suggestions are in keeping with the DASH diet:

  • Cut back meat portions by a third or half.
  • Use more vegetables, pasta, and beans, and cut back meat in one-dish meals like stir-fry or casseroles.
  • Have a couple of vegetarian meals each week.
  • Add a serving of vegetables to lunch and dinner.
  • Make substitutions to get to three fat-free or low-fat dairy servings a day such as skim milk instead of soda or wine.
  • Eat fruit for a snack or add it to a meal.

Grains include bread, cereal, rice and pasta. Focus on whole grains. For instance, use brown rice instead of white rice, whole-wheat pasta instead of regular pasta and whole-grain bread instead of white bread. Grains are naturally low in fat, so avoid spreading on butter or adding cream and cheese sauces.

Tomatoes, carrots, broccoli, sweet potatoes, greens and other vegetables are full of fiber and vitamins. A hearty blend of vegetables served over brown rice or whole-wheat noodles can serve as the main dish for a meal. When buying frozen and canned vegetables, choose those labeled as low sodium or without added salt.

Like vegetables, fruits are packed with fiber, potassium and magnesium and are typically low in fat. Exceptions include avocados and coconuts. Leave on edible peels whenever possible. Citrus fruits and juice, such as grapefruit, can interact with certain medications, so check with the doctor or pharmacist to see if they’re OK.

Choose dairy products that are low-fat or fat-free. Low-fat or fat-free frozen yogurt can help boost the amount of dairy products while offering a sweet treat. Go easy on regular and even fat-free cheeses because they are typically high in sodium.

Don’t make meats a mainstay. Cut back typical meat portions by one-third or one-half and pile on the vegetables instead. Examples of one serving include 1 oz. cooked skinless poultry, seafood or lean meat, 1 egg, or 1 oz. water-packed, no-salt-added canned tuna. Trim away skin and fat from meat and then broil, grill, roast or poach instead of frying. Eat heart-healthy fish, such as salmon, herring and tuna.

The DASH diet provides 30 percent or less of daily calories from fat with a focus on the healthier unsaturated fats. Saturated fat and trans fat are the main dietary culprits in raising cholesterol and increasing the risk of coronary artery disease. Trans fat are found in processed food such as crackers, baked goods and fried items. DASH helps keep daily saturated fat to less than 10 percent of total calories by limiting use of meat, butter, cheese, whole milk, cream and eggs, along with foods made from lard, solid shortenings, and palm and coconut oils.

As for sweets, don’t banish them, but go easy. Choose fat-free or low-fat sweets such as sorbets, fruit ices, jelly beans, hard candy, graham crackers or low-fat cookies.

New research shows that following the DASH diet over time will reduce the risk of stroke and heart disease as well as kidney stones. The benefits of the DASH diet have also been seen in teens with hypertension. The DASH diet truly is a  diet for everyone.

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