Caring for the ethnically diverse older adult can prove to be challenging in efforts to maintain function and provide comfort. I will use an older African American male with hypertension. For this patient, the two strategies that I would implement would be diet and exercise. According to healthy people 2020, heart disease is the number 1 cause of death, and hypertension is a modifiable risk factor.
African Americans use a lot of seasonings, in particular salt, and this greatly impacts their chronic illness management. I would implement a dietary education strategy that includes salt substitution, and seasoning alternatives that keep food appetizing yet healthy. Also, we must integrate healthier meal choices, and refrain from fast food, frozen meals, and In order to maintain compliance with dietary changes and substitutions, food must taste good. Education is needed on reading food package labels and choosing lower sodium options.
The second strategy will be to educate and help implement an exercise regimen. Many older adults are hesitant to exercise because they feel that it may be time consuming, but there can be ways to incorporate it in small steps through out the day. The Mayo Clinic staff states that regular physical activity makes your heart stronger to pump more blood with less effort, and the end result is decreased blood pressure. Discuss adding walking during breaks and before and after work, then increase or add an activity at intervals to create a program catered to them.