Good nutrition is important no matter what stage of life a person is in. But, for seniors it’s extremely important since age changes the body, causing muscle loss and thinner bones. In addition, seniors are more likely to have chronic conditions that can be supported by healthy eating. Older adults also usually need fewer calories because of changes in metabolism. They may even lose their appetites. Unfortunately, making good food choices isn’t always easy. Below are 8 tips for helping seniors to eat a healthy diet.
1. Know What a Healthy Diet Is.
You may think you know what a healthy diet is, but many people aren’t familiar with proper portion sizes or how much of each of the food groups are needed each day. There are several online resources that family caregivers can learn from, including the USDA’s guide to healthy eating called My Plate, which you can find by visiting choosemyplate.gov.
2. Choose Foods Rich in Nutrients.
Because calorie requirements change with age, seniors need to make the most of the calories they eat. Pick foods that are packed with important vitamins and minerals like:
• Whole grains.
• Lean protein.
• Low-fat dairy.
3. Learn to Read Labels.
Understanding nutritional labels can help you to choose foods for your aging relative that are low in calories, sugar, sodium, and fat. They can also help you determine the proper portion size.
4. Eat with Others.
Having to eat alone can make eating unpleasant. As a result, your aging relative may not eat enough. Invite the senior to eat with you as often as possible. Elderly care can also be scheduled to come to the person’s house at mealtimes to offer companionship during meals.
5. Don’t Forget Fiber.
Eating enough fiber helps to keep the digestive system running properly. Some fiber-rich foods are:
6. Get Enough Liquids.
Older adults don’t feel thirst the same way younger people do. Make sure your aging relative drinks plenty of water throughout the day. Other good beverage choices are skim milk and 100 percent juice.
7. Spice Things Up.
Seniors can lose some of their sense of taste, making foods seem bland. However, adding too much salt can raise blood pressure. Use herbs and spices to flavor food instead.
8. Enlist the Help of Elderly Care.
Elderly care providers can prepare nutritious meals for your older family member. If the senior is on a specific diet because of a chronic condition, the elderly care provider can cook meals that follow the plan. Elderly care providers can even help with grocery shopping and meal planning.
If you or an aging loved one are considering hiring professional elderly care in Birmingham, AL, call and talk to the staff at Lipford Home Care (205) 623-5700.
They have three teenage children and are actively involved in their church and community – both teach high school Sunday school while Dennis coaches youth sports and Kelly leads a women’s Bible study. Dennis & Kelly personally manage the daily activities of the company.
It is their passion and commitment to providing quality and responsive service that has made their company the fastest growing home care agency in Birmingham.
They believe that being an independently owned and operated company gives them the flexibility to manage their business in a way that better serves their clients.
They understand you have a choice in care providers and they will do their utmost to earn your trust.