Despite the fact that the USA is a wealthy nation, some seniors experience malnutrition because they are taking medications that make them queasy or cause them to lose their appetite, or because they have medical issues that make it difficult for them to eat particular foods. One of the most effective strategies to improve the health and well-being of an older adult is to provide a diet high in nutrients.
In the opinion of senior care experts, seniors who follow a nutritious diet can minimize their risk of high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, anemia, and bone loss. They can also lower their cholesterol levels. However, it can be challenging to ensure that seniors eat healthily because they typically require fewer calories than younger folks while still requiring the same if not more, nutrients. The tips shared by our senior living experts will help you ensure that your senior loved one is having healthy meals.
Seniors sometimes avoid tough-to-chew items like pork chops because they have lost teeth or are wearing dentures that don’t fit properly. Serving nutrient-dense soups and soft foods like rice, hot cereal, and steamed veggies will enhance your parents’ nutrition levels while also motivating them to visit the dentist or a denturist. Food can be softened by adding gravy or sauce, cutting, mashing, or pureeing the ingredients, or all three.
Before selecting how to modify a cuisine, make sure to take its texture and flavor into account. Pork chop puree is significantly less enjoyable than a very little chunk of pork chop mixed with some rice or noodles!
Consuming adequate amounts of fiber will help older persons avoid constipation, a common condition, as well as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Older adults should also consume adequate amounts of protein. Oat or wheat bran, beans and lentils, berries, greens, almonds, and lentils are all excellent sources of fiber.
There are several methods to add more fiber to meals that you already enjoy, such as switching from white flour to whole grain and eating apples or other fruits and vegetables with the skin on. However, keep in mind that consuming extra fiber may make food less appetizing and more challenging to consume. If so, think about taking a food-mixable fiber supplement.
Seniors’ inadequate protein intake is another issue that has some people worried. (An older woman should consume 45 grams of protein on a daily basis, while an older man should consume 50 grams.) Make sure the senior in your life consume adequate amounts of protein from a variety of high-quality sources.
Avoid processed meat items like hot dogs and salami when picking proteins; instead, opt for fish, free-range poultry, or grass-fed red meat. Serve milk, eggs, yogurt, soy milk, protein smoothies, and cooked beans instead of meat if you can’t or don’t want to consume it.