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Healthy Diet for Seniors and its Benefits

healthy foods for seniorsOur regular collaborator, Edward Francis with Supplemented.co.uk alerts us that trying to stay healthy as we age can be a bit of a challenge, and it’s even more difficult to try and encourage someone else to be healthy. He says: “…But there are many benefits of having a healthy diet as a senior, so it’s definitely worth the effort. Here’s just a few of the main benefits of having a healthy diet as a senior:

Reduce Risk of Heart Issues

As we get older, our heart is already at a higher risk of suffering from issues – whether that’s heart attacks, heart disease or other similar problems. Making sure you have a healthy diet is one way to lower these risks and keep your heart in top shape. But what exactly is a heart healthy diet? Portion size is important here – eating too much of even the best things isn’t great for you. There’s no need to cut the size so much that you’re hungry, but learning not to overfill your plate is a great foundation for building a healthy diet on. Other key aspects of a heart healthy diet include eating more fruit and vegetables, swapping to whole grains, and limiting unhealthy fats. It’s important to note that it’s only unhealthy fats – there’s no need to cut out fat altogether!

Have More Energy

It’s common for older people to begin to feel lethargic and low on energy. Part of this is simply because of aging, but it’s often something worsened by underlying issues – such as depression, or a poor diet. Swapping to a healthier diet is a quick way to give yourself an energy boost. If this is the main benefit that interests you, there are some specific tips you should follow. Firstly, make sure you’re eating breakfast! This is a vital part of both eating healthily and keeping your energy rates high. If you’re really struggling to eat a full meal in the mornings, even snacking on a breakfast bar is better than not eating. Complex carbohydrates are a must – starchy foods such as potatoes are a great source of these. And finally – make sure you’re drinking plenty of water. Being dehydrated saps away energy, and making sure you’re drinking lots throughout the day is a great way to feel refreshed.

Strong Bones

One risk for seniors is brittle bones – it’s why there’s an increased risk of hip fractures from falls, for instance. Whilst this isn’t entirely avoidable, it is possible to lessen the impact by ensuring you’re eating correctly. Calcium and vitamin D are the most important things to consider here. Vitamin D is often hard to get enough of through diet alone, so we recommend taking a supplement in order to ensure you reap the benefits. As for calcium, milk and yogurt are key sources, but you should also consider increasing the amount of green leafy vegetables and nuts that you eat, as these are great secondary sources. It’s also important to remain active – in this case, diet can only go so far, so making sure you get a regular amount of exercise (even if it’s only a small amount) is vital.

Keep Your Mind Sharp

There’s a lot of discussion on the best way to keep your mind sharp as you age – from doing sudoku to taking long walks. One thing everyone agrees on though is that your diet plays a massive part of it. Starting to eat more healthily can has major benefits for your mind, and if you’re concerned about issues like dementia or Alzheimer’s, then it’s a quick and easy change with a big impact. If this is the thing you’re most concerned about, then a big thing to add into your diet is omega-3s. Foods like salmon are the obvious choice, but did you know you can also get the same effects from flax seeds? Green tea is another worthwhile addition, as it’s great for countering free radicals – the things most likely to be responsible for age-related mind issues.

These are just a few of the potential benefits gained from having a healthy diet – there are many more, and it’s something worth discussing with a medical professional if you have any queries about. Just be aware that the portions deemed healthy for a senior are likely to differ from what’s considered healthy for a younger adult, so make sure to do the research and not overload with food by mistake. Everything calls, of course for balance. That what you like and that what you must have versus what improves your quality of life. A difficult balance to keep and yet, a token for quality of life.

 

Dietary Tips for Senior Citizens

Age is an issue of mind over matter. If you don’t mind, it doesn’t matter- Mark Twain

apple-17092_150For some people, age is just a number and for them it’s not the age, it’s the mileage that matters. It is commonly believed that as people grow older many health problems are likely to occur. Problems which tend to affect both body and mind.

Yes, it’s true but that should not halt you from living your life to the fullest. As we age there are evident changes in our metabolism, appetite and emotional state – that’s part and parcel. However there are ways of minimizing, the more unpleasant effects of aging. A proper diet is one of the aforementioned ways and this article outlines the way to understand the proper dietary changes and needs at this juncture.

Diet-package

As requirement of vitamins, proteins, minerals, fluids and carbohydrates changes, all these nutrients have to be packaged in easy-to-digest and easy-to-absorb, small frequent meals which are spread out and spaced well over the entire day. Women especially should be very careful about their diet in old age, as due to menopause, the ability to absorb calcium reduces and may result in joints weakness and susceptibility to fractures.

Dietary Tips

Follow these tips to boost your nutritional health:

Plain water: Drink plenty to stay hydrated as adequate water intake ensures that food moves through the bowels easily and prevents constipation. Humans need daily intake of at least seven to eight glass of liquid. Avoid caffeinated beverages.

Healthy Fats: Strictly avoid saturated and trans fats. Rather opt for healthy fats found in seeds, nuts, avocados and fish. Fish and nuts packed with omega-3 fatty acids improve focusing skill and decrease their risk of Alzheimer’s.

Power Protein: Avoid red meat and include more sources like fish, beans, peas, nuts, eggs, milk, cheese, and seeds in your diet. As less than 15g won’t benefit bone or muscle, divide your protein intake among meals but aim for 25 to 40g of high-quality protein per meal.

Whole Grains: Choose whole grains over processed white flour for more nutrients and more fiber as these fiber and nutrient-rich grains will help your digestion and protect your heart. Choose brown rice, whole grain cereals, and whole wheat bread instead of white bread and refined grains.

C for Calcium: Seniors should really opt for calcium-rich foods and low-fat dairy products like – tofu, broccoli, and almonds- to prevent osteoporosis and bone fractures. To maintain bone-health, older people need 1,200 mg of calcium a day. Include products like milk, yogurt and cheese only after consulting doctor.

Vital Vitamins

Vitamin B12: With aging comes body’s decreased ability to absorb vitamin B12 needed to help keep blood and nerves vital as stomach produces less gastric acid. Getting more B12 through diet and supplements will ensure that you meet your requirements.

Vitamin D: The skin becomes less efficient with aging at synthesizing vitamin D necessary to absorb calcium and boosting muscles as we get most of our vitamin D intake through sun exposure. One should opt for food rich in vitamin D and consult your physician for multivitamin supplements.

Fruits & Vegetables: Fruits are rich in fibers and vitamins so two to three meals of seasonal fruit-salad will work as antioxidants and will prevent constipation. Opt for whole fruits rather than juices. Choose antioxidant-rich dark-green leafy such as spinach and broccoli as well as orange and yellow vegetables, such as carrots. Vegetables soups without cream and thickening agents are healthy meal option.

As against the popular misconception that one needs to diet and sacrifice during old age this article focuses on varying your diet chart to encompass fine dining as well. Now since you know what you need, you can make necessary changes accordingly and celebrate as happier and healthier Senior Being.