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Healthy Food Choices for Seniors

Diet and exercise go hand-in-hand with achieving and maintaining optimal fitness at any age. For seniors, it can be even more challenging to strike the best balance between getting the nutrition they need while controlling the number of calories they eat.

As we age, our metabolism slows, preventing us from needing the same number of calories to stay at a healthy weight. At the same time, the need to consume a variety of nutrients is even more important to help prevent the onset or advancement of some health conditions such as diabetes and Alzheimer’s.

Our Balanced Care Method™ is just one way that Home Care Assistance San Antonio differs from any other in-home care company for seniors. This approach to longevity and healthy living for seniors is based on a balanced approach to nutrition, physical exercise, mental stimulation, and sociability. The method promotes smart lifestyle choices and encourages the healthiest possible diet for seniors in any setting or with any degree of independence.

Less activity and a slower metabolism mean that seniors no longer need to eat the same number of calories that they did when they were younger. It also means that they need to get as much nutrition as possible at every meal. In many cases, the best approach is to start substituting healthier foods for those they currently eat. Making changes gradually will allow them to adjust their eating habits in a positive way that they can learn to enjoy.

Fruits and Vegetables

Produce is the staple of any healthy diet, and the greater the variety, the better!  Fresh, raw vegetables have the greatest nutrition, with frozen ones being the second-best choice. Canned vegetables and fruits contain a lot of salt and/or sugar that should be limited.

A diet that is high in fiber is important for seniors to help keep their digestion system healthy, and broccoli, peas, and Brussel sprouts are good sources of it. Of the fruits, apples, strawberries, oranges, and bananas have the most fiber, and they also include a variety of important vitamins and antioxidants that aid in good health.

Lean Protein

Protein helps seniors resist stress, anxiety, and depression. All types of fish and seafood, poultry, eggs, and lentils are good sources of low-fat protein. Stick with whole foods and avoid processed meats that are high in sodium.

Nuts and Seeds

A variety of nuts and seeds can provide seniors with powerful antioxidants and healthy fats that are a lot better choice than sweets or chips that have too many calories or the wrong types of fat. Eat alone as a snack or on a salad in place of croutons.

Whole Grains

Replace white breads and starchy foods like potatoes with those that contain whole grains. Start the day off with a whole-grain muffin, a bowl of cereal, or some oatmeal to get a boost of fiber instead of a sugar-high that comes from sweet cereals or pastries.

Low-Fat Dairy

Choose milk and cheese that is fortified with vitamin D, an essential nutrient of which seniors often get too little. Vitamin D is needed for the absorption of calcium to strengthen bones. The vitamin also plays a role in immunity, regulating cell growth and carrying messages through the nervous system.

Healthy Food Choices for Seniors

Having someone to plan meals makes it easier to make the necessary changes for a healthier lifestyle. HelpGuide.com recommends saying “no” to eating alone. Even those seniors who live alone can benefit by reaching out to other family members or neighbors to make meals more enjoyable and help them stick to their new eating plan.

Seniors receiving in-home care management will have the companionship they need to provide the healthy meals and social aspects to make eating healthier.

To learn more about our in-home care services, call 210-996-2733 or 830-214-0096. We have solutions to meet every individual need.

Source

1. https://www.helpguide.org/articles/healthy-eating/eating-well-as-you-age.htm