At a certain age, difficulties faced by senior citizens are increased and you need nutrition more than ever. The physical problems of old age are a lot and there are several things you can’t do at that age. Today, I am going to address senior citizen problems and solutions which will help you take care of yourself at the old age and the elderly in your house. Today I will also address a few questions like What are the factors affecting nutrition in the elderly? and Why nutrition is important for the elderly?
Before we begin, Let’s shed some light on the reasons behind Why older people are at risk of malnutrition?
Loss of Hunger
It is the most simple question to answer. Where do we get out nutrition from? The answer to the most simple question is “Food“. If you don’t eat properly your body can’t function properly.
If you want to know how eating alone affects the health of the elderly? then keep reading…
Senior Citizens lose their hunger or appetite because of several medications they consume because of chronic diseases. Psychological problems also contribute to the loss of hunger and nutrition in the elderly guidelines should be followed.
Slow Metabolic Rate
The metabolic rate or the energy requirements are depreciated by 100 calories per decade. This rate goes down even further down after the age of 60. Along with less caloric intake, different diseases either increase or decrease the energy requirement. This messes up the metabolic rate & the nutrition is not absorbed by the body properly.
Unable to chew
Dental problems in Senior citizens is quite common in senior citizens. Losing teeth is one of the topmost reasons for common nutritional deficiencies in elderly. Being unable to chew or swallow food, senior citizens lack in nutrients.
Losing Sense of Taste & Smell
Some of the medications in old age result in loss of taste and smell making it very unpleasant to eat anything. According to some theories, changes in the taste and smell is caused by the ageing process. Gastrointestinal tract also plays a key role in losing the appetite. Not eating anything in the night makes the older adults less hungry in the morning. These physical changes make them lose their appetite.
Physical problems of old age cause chronic diseases. Senior citizens might have to take several medications to keep those diseases under control. Sometimes, these medicines cause disruptions in the digestive system and make it highly unlikely for them to eat.
The above-mentioned points can cause common nutritional deficiencies in elderly. What can be done to improve the nutritional health of the elderly? Let us give you some tips on How to provide extremely important nutrition for elderly patients?
What can be done to Improve the Nutritional Health of the Elderly?
In this section, I will give some useful but very simple tips to improve the nutrition in the diets of the elderly. These tips don’t take much time and effort. Let’s begin.
Make the meals Nutrient Rich
The cheat code for making the meals nutrient rich is to first pick a variety of favourite foods of the individual. Instead of making a single meal make a meal which contains many nutritional ingredients. Use these following tips:
Provide frequent Meals
Keep the surroundings quiet & comfortable
Avoid naps during meal time.
Cook favourite meals
Use Spices while Cooking
A explained above, the taste & smell of the senior citizens diminish at a certain age. Use spices & herbs to make the meals tastier. When I say spices don’t mistake me with the wrong spices. Use onion & garlic powder. Herbs like basil, oregano & cilantro which makes the food tasty & healthy as well.
Make a meal which looks great. For example, if you are making an oatmeal, try & use some strawberries and blueberries to make it look delicious and increasing the nutritional value at the same time. Use tomato sauce in mashed sweet potatoes to give it a colourful boost.
Non-nutritional items and drinks like coffee and tea should be avoided. Studies show that senior citizens eat more with family. So, make sure that the meal time is social.
A healthy meal is super important but we cannot get all the nutrients from food. In this situation, use a multivitamin because they can help in common nutritional deficiencies in elderly. Consult your doctor or physician before taking any multivitamins.
As we spoke above, we have to divide the meals throughout the day:
Breakfast: Around 7 to 8 o’clock
Snack: After 2 to 3 hours of Breakfast
Lunch: After 1 o’clock of the snack
Snack: Around 4 o’clock
Dinners: Around 7 o’clock
Difficulties faced by Senior Citizens can be controlled by nutrition. Let us tell you.
What foods to eat exactly to get all the nutrients?
To get instant energy with nutrients is extremely important in old age. Fewer nutrients mean less energy and less energy means napping all the time. Eat these energy boosting foods like eggs, lean protein from meat and fish. Eat plenty of nuts and seeds and try and include peanut butter in your breakfast.
Energy boosting drinks like milk, protein smoothies with whey protein, buttermilk, vegetable oils, cheese & fruit juices should be added.
To Sum it up
Old age health problems and solutions can be broken down into age categories. For example, if you are at 30 years old then you have really watch out for sweets and sugars because in today’s lifestyle of prolonged sitting and little to no physical activity, you can easily become a victim of Diabetes & once you have diabetes it will follow you for your entire life.
What can be done to Improve the Nutritional Health of the Elderly? The most simple answer to this question is to work out. It is not that hard to workout 4 times a week and gets some sweat going. It will remove all the toxins from your body. Physical problems of old age & problems like diabetes can be solved by Exercise. Be a consistent fitness lover. Sweating and heart pumping exercises can really assist you in living a healthy life & keep diseases like diabetes in control. Working out slows down the Aging process and keeps you fit for a longer period of time & keeps diseases at bay.
A proper health assessment is essential to avoid Most common health problems in elderly and provide a comprehensive and nutrition plan for this age group. The importance of Nutrition for elderly patients is highly recognised over the past decade for both small to morbid diseases.
Common health problems caused by poor diet in elderly are controllable. These diseases with psychological changes create a much bigger hurdle for the older adults. I’ve tried to cover most of the answers regarding the question What can be done to Improve the Nutritional Health of the Elderly?
Physical problems of old age are curable with the help of a physician, proper nutritional plan and a workout plan.
Hope this article was useful.