As a senior age, meal planning and preparation can become increasingly challenging. They may suddenly find themselves living alone and unprepared to cook, they may have trouble getting around the kitchen, or they may not have as much money to spend on food as they once did. As they age, seniors’ bodies and lifestyles change, as does what they need to eat for healthy aging. Your loved one may need fewer calories, but getting enough of the right nutrients is more vital than ever.
How Eating Well Promotes Healthy Eating
Often, an aging adult’s food intake may decrease, and there may be a lack of variety in their diet. It can become increasingly difficult for them to summon the energy to have a healthy, balanced diet, and they may default to something quick and easy to prepare.
Having a nutritionally sound diet is essential to maintaining good health for a senior. In addition to giving them more energy and helping them control their weight, a healthy diet can also help prevent:
- High Blood Pressure
- Heart Disease
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Prostate Cancer
- Colon Cancer
- Pancreatic Cancer
Proper nutrition and good health go hand-in-hand, especially for adults over 65.
5 Tips to Keep Your Senior Eating Healthy
Creating a diet plan for the senior in your life doesn’t have to be complicated. By incorporating these five simple tips, you can ensure that they’re eating healthy, nutritious meals.
Select Foods That Have a High Nutritional Value
Our metabolism slows as we age, and our bodies don’t need as many calories as they once did. The quality of the calories is more important than the quantity.
When meal planning, make sure your senior’s grocery list includes:
- Whole grains (brown rice, oatmeal, corn, etc.)
- Whole wheat
- Non-fat or low-fat milk, almond or soy milk
- Nuts, beans, and seeds
- Lean meat, chicken, seafood, and eggs
Limit Empty Calories
Unfortunately, some of the most enjoyable items we eat don’t provide much nutritional value. They supply energy but very little nutrition in the way of vitamins, minerals, protein, fiber, or essential fatty acids. These fun foods include: