Community Blog

Why All Elders Need to Eat a Healthy Diet

By Denise Roskamp

Senior Care in Wayland MA


We learn at a young age how important eating a well-balanced diet is for our health. Eating the right foods is even more important as we age because the body is unable to digest food as easily and the metabolism slows down, leading to constipation and other health issues. Someone who was once able to eat fast food without gaining a pound will most likely pay the price with added pounds once they get older.

If your elderly parent is in need of senior care due to a health problem, changing their diet could make a huge difference in how they feel and look. Those people who need a little more convincing to switch over to a healthier diet should take a good look at these added benefits to consuming food that is good for the body and mind.

Lowers the risk of disease. Elders are prone to chronic illnesses due to their weakened immune systems, but healthy eating can change that. A well-balanced diet could actually reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, bone loss, stroke, anemia, and cancer. High blood pressure and high cholesterol may also be lowered. Older adults suffering from chronic illnesses will also be able to better manage their health by eating a variety of wholesome foods.

Increases energy. One of the most noticeable changes as the body gets older is a shift in sleep patterns. Seniors might find it more difficult to sleep at night, but be constantly tired during the day. Taking naps during the day is not the answer. Instead, by making the right food and drink choices, the body will get the energy it needs throughout the day. It is important your loved one eat the right amount of calories in order to reap these benefits, which depends on gender, how active the person is, their height, and weight. Talk to their doctor or dietician to determine how many calories should be consumed per day.

Boosts the digestive system. Constipation is a common problem in the elderly because they are not getting enough fluids or fiber. Drinking plenty of water and eating a variety of fruits and vegetables will resolve this digestive issue.

Can lower weight. A few extra pounds can lead to type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and other illnesses in elders. Many older adults gain weight because they are consuming too many calories and not getting enough physical activity. Eating low calorie foods that contain a plethora of nutrients will keep their weight down. If the elder is home bound and in need of elderly care because they have limited mobility, fewer calories should be consumed to keep their weight down compared to active seniors.

Eating the right foods can be a challenge for those who are not used to a healthy diet. Making one small change to their diet at a time will put them on the right track to a healthy body.

Source:
http://nihseniorhealth.gov/eatingwellasyougetolder/benefitsofeatingwell/01.html

IF YOU OR AN AGING LOVED ONE ARE CONSIDERING SENIOR CARE IN WAYLAND, MA, PLEASE CONTACT THE CARING STAFF AT HOME HELPERS TODAY. CALL NOW (508) 545-0164.