fbpx

Healthy Diet for Older Adults-min

15 Tips to A Healthy Diet for Older Adults

Proper diet and a healthy life are just as important for the elderly as they are for everyone. Unfortunately, a large number of older adults have poor diets – often from not eating nutritious foods. What’s more, many of the diseases suffered by older adults are due to dietary factors.
 .
Therefore, it is important that older people maintain a healthy diet.

However, providing older persons with adequate nutrition has its own sets of challenges. First, their nutritional requirements are not well defined. Second, their nutrient needs are affected by the ageing process. For example, while the energy requirement per kilogram of body weight reduces as we age, other essential nutrients may increase in later life.

15 healthy diet tips for seniors

1. Eat Nutrient-Dense Foods

2. Limit Foods That Are High in Calories

3. Choose Healthier Convenience Foods

4. Eat Enough Fibre

5. Drink Plenty of Fluids

6. Use Dietary Supplements

7. Consider a Fortified Diet

8. Plan Your Meals

9. Control Portion Sizes

10. Season with Herbs, Spices and Condiments

11. Include Healthy Fats

12. Eat Regular Meals

13. Reduce Sugar Intake

14. Watch Your Alcohol Intake

15. Stay Social

You can read more about these below.

1. Eat Nutrient-Dense Foods

As you age, your caloric needs reduce while your nutrient needs stay the same or increase.

Additionally, appetite can often decrease as we get older. Eating nutrient-dense foods will ensure you get the minerals, vitamins, proteins and other nutrients your body needs.

The diet for elderly person should contain:

• Nutrient-rich fruits and vegetables
• Whole grains like oats, whole wheat, bulgur, brown rice, and quinoa
• Low-fat or fat-free dairy, or soy, or almond that is rich in calcium and vitamin D
• Poultry, eggs, lean meats, and seafood
• Seeds, nuts and beans

2. Limit Foods That Are High in Calories

Since older adults need fewer calories, they should limit foods that have many calories and offer few nutrients. Elderly people diet should have less of these foods:

• Sugar-sweetened beverages
• White bread, white rice, degermed cornflower and foods made from refined grains

3. Choose Healthier Convenience Foods

Traditionally, convenience foods have not been a healthy choice. Therefore, if you find yourself relying on convenience foods, be sure to choose healthy options. Here are a few convenient yet healthy items you can incorporate into a diet for elderly person:

• Frozen veggie pizza
• Canned tuna or salmon
• Prepackaged low-fat yogurt
• Bagged salad or coleslaw mix
• Frozen or low-sodium canned vegetables
• Low-sodium canned broth and tomatoes

4. Eat Enough Fibre

Fibre plays an important role in the health of our digestive tract. It keeps the digestive system tract flowing by ensuring the bowel movements are soft and regular. To avoid constipation and other digestive problems, include fibre rich foods in your diet.

Good sources of fibre include:

• Nuts and seeds
• Peas, beans, and pulses
• Potatoes with skin
• Fruits such as melon, pears, bananas, and berries
• Deep-coloured vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, and chard

Here is a useful video with some tips on a high fibre diet.

Eating well, and getting your fibre intake, is essential to ensuring good wellbeing as otherwise it can also impact on your sleep patterns.

5. Drink Plenty of Fluids

Dehydration can happen to anyone at any age, but it is more common in older adults. As we age, our body water content decreases and our sense of thirst lessens increasing the risk of dehydration.
While you may feel less thirsty, your body still needs water to stay healthy. Aim to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses of water a day. You can also drink juice, tea, milk, and old-fashioned chicken soup.

6. Use Dietary Supplements

If you don’t eat a variety of healthy foods, dietary supplements can help you get adequate amounts of essential nutrients. Remember to talk with your doctor before you start taking any supplements.
This is because some supplements can cause side effects if certain health conditions exist or if taken with other medications. The doctor will also determine which supplements you should take – a vitamin or mineral supplement.

7. Consider a Fortified Diet

Older adults whose diets don’t include a lot of fruits and vegetables and who dislike oral nutritional supplements should consider having a fortified diet. Fortified foods and snacks have a higher nutrient density that can help increase the energy and protein intake of older people.

Some of the best food to incorporate into an elderly people diet include milk, bread, cereals, pasta, NON-GMO soy products, and high-quality salt to name a few.

8. Plan Your Meals

Planning meals is a key part of healthy eating. It also helps you with budgeting, shopping and avoiding unhealthy temptations. Consider making a list of what you’re going to eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This might be for a whole week or a few days.
Then cook ahead and keep the portions frozen until you need them. You can also keep canned or frozen vegetables and fruits on hand to use as snacks.
You can use products such as Dutch ovens to help you cook your planned meals in a healthy way.

9. Control Portion Sizes

A portion size, also known as a serving size, is the amount of food or drink you consume in one sitting. A lot of people eat way more than they need to especially when getting takeout or eating out.
To keep your portion sizes in check, measure accurately, use smaller dinnerware, ask for a half a portion when eating out and avoid eating straight from the container.

10. Season with Herbs, Spices and Condiments

Add herbs, spices, and condiments to meals to add flavour. In addition to adding flavour, you can use herbs and spices as part of a healthful diet thanks to their health benefits.
For example, chillie peppers can boost your metabolism and help keep your blood vessels healthy and ginger has anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties that can help ward off inflammatory diseases like gastritis and cancer.

11. Include Healthy Fats

Heart-healthy fats can improve blood cholesterol levels and lower your risk of heart disease if eaten in place of unhealthy fats. Here are fats you can include in your overall healthy eating plan:

• Omega-3 fatty acids – are found in oily fish such as sardines, salmon, tuna and trout. Other good sources are walnuts, flaxseeds, and soybeans.
• Monounsaturated fats include peanut, sunflower, sesame, canola and olive oil. This type of fats can also be found in avocados, olives, and nuts.
• Polyunsaturated fats – are found in sunflower seeds, fish and vegetable oils such as soybean, safflower, sunflower, sesame and corn oils.

12. Eat Regular Meals

Establishing regular eating is important for older people as it gives structure to their eating habits. It also keeps their metabolism and sugar levels steady and minimises feelings of dizziness, tiredness, and irritability.

Your regular eating should take the form of three meals and two to three snacks a day. Also, make sure to eat meals at similar times each day, not skip meals or snacks, and not leave a gap of more than three hours between meals/snacks.

13. Reduce Sugar Intake

It is recommended that adults keep their intake of sugars to less than 10% of total energy intake. Consuming more of the required intake can increase the risk of overweight and tooth decay. What’s more, studies show that high sugar intake can increase the risk of mild cognitive impairment in older adults.

Try to reduce or eliminate sugary drinks from your diet and eat whole foods that are naturally sweet such as yams, sweet potatoes, and fruits.

14. Watch Your Alcohol Intake

Alcohol has more calories per gram than proteins and carbohydrates but has no other nutritional value. Plus, it can lead to some kinds of immune system disorders, worsen health conditions like stroke, osteoporosis, and high blood pressure, and can cause confusion and forgetfulness – symptoms that could be mistaken for Alzheimer’s disease.

15. Stay Social

Eat often with friends or family members – social interaction can make mealtimes very enjoyable. If you can’t cook for yourself, ask for help from friends, family or community services.

Enjoying a healthy diet will keep you healthy as you age. Just remember to eat well, drink plenty of fluids and avoid foods that do not have nutritional value.

 

Dieting Advice for Elderly People

Nutrition for the Elderly

10 Home Exercises for the Elderly