Candy is not just for kids anymore. While some candies may be chock-full of sugar and artificial flavors, there are healthier options out there for seniors. Seniors love candy because it is good for satisfying a sweet tooth and can be incorporated into any part of their day. Perhaps it is an indulging treat after a meal, included in a relaxing moment or incorporated in a social activity. Maybe candy is associated with memories from a childhood of candy-filled festivities and holidays. Whatever their reason, seniors love candy and can include it, in moderation, as part of a healthy lifestyle. The following ingredients found in candies can provide various benefits to the health of a senior.
More studies are finding that dark chocolate is healthy for you. Antioxidants found in cacao beans are associated with a lower risk for cardiovascular diseases. Eating dark chocolate as part of a healthy lifestyle can also lower your blood pressure and may even prevent diabetes. Seniors can get a healthy dose of dark chocolate by eating a cacao bar or, for even more health benefits, by consuming nuts and berries covered in dark chocolate.
Nuts or Nut Butter
Candies containing peanuts, almonds or peanut butter can be healthier than other candies because of the protein they contain. Protein is an essential part of a healthy diet because, among other things, it aids the immune system and provides energy. So make sure the senior in your life pops a peanut butter cup before their daily walk or exercise routine for that boost of energy.
Coconut is linked with improved cardiovascular health and can slow down an increase in blood sugar levels. Coconut is also a good source of fiber, so eating candy containing coconut may aid in digestion and leave seniors feeling fuller for longer periods of time.
Peppermint is a known remedy for an upset stomach since it aids in digestion after eating. But did you know that the smell of peppermint has been linked to mental alertness? After eating lunch, a senior can combat that afternoon lull and drowsiness with a peppermint candy for a few hours of attentiveness and activity.
Ginger contains potassium, magnesium, Vitamin D, and antioxidants. Ginger is known for treating nausea and fatigue, but it can also do other things. Studies suggest that ginger has anti-inflammatory elements that may lower cholesterol and even ease the nagging pain of arthritis. Seniors should be sure to keep a bag of ginger candies on hand for keeping arthritis at bay.
Seniors who love candy can continue to enjoy it in moderate amounts and reap health benefits at the same time. From improving attentiveness to easing the aches and pains of arthritis, candy can give delicious relief from life’s daily complaints. So go ahead, seniors, and pamper yourselves with the sweet, richness of dark chocolate, the creamy goodness of peanut butter, the flaky indulgence of coconut, the refreshing coolness of peppermint and the savory smoothness of ginger.