Establishing healthy eating habits starts early in life. A diet that includes fruits, vegetables, proteins, and other vital food benefits the body, mind, and spirit well into adulthood. For seniors, continuing the cycle is especially important for promoting strong bones, energy, and a strong immune system. Whether you or a loved one lives in a nursing home environment or independently, here are several ways to eat healthier.
What Are Some Healthy Eating Tips for Seniors?
1. Include Calcium
As individuals get older, they may become more susceptible to osteoporosis, a condition that weakens the bones. Calcium helps fortify the skeleton to help prevent bone fractures. Foods that contain the mineral include cheese, milk, yogurt, and even certain vegetables such as kale. Include them in your daily diet for optimum bone strength.
2. Stay Hydrated
Some older individuals are likely to become dehydrated quicker due to a decrease in thirst sensation. Be sure to drink the recommended amount of water each day to avoid this dangerous condition. Doctors and nurses at nursing homes can offer guidance on ideal levels to consume. To enhance the flavor of water, add lemon, lime, and other fruits. Drinking water is also helpful for preventing constipation and urinary tract infections.
3. Add Fiber
At any age, fiber is an essential component that helps the body’s digestion system safely and regularly break down and eliminate food. For seniors, eating foods with fiber is especially important because digestion issues are fairly common. When enjoying breakfast or lunch with family or at a nursing home, include fruit such as blueberries and strawberries. Lentils, peas, and kidney beans are also delicious additions to soups and salads.
4. Mix Proteins
Protein can be found in a variety of foods such as nuts, eggs, fish, and beans. Mix up your source of proteins so that you’re getting a combination of protein and other minerals such as iron and calcium. Including protein in your daily dishes can also help promote good heart health and reduce the chances of getting sick. Stay away from proteins in processed bacon and cold cuts, which may clog arteries and increase cholesterol levels.
If you’re a senior, you can eat healthier without sacrificing delicious meals. Hillview Health Care Center in La Crosse, WI, specializes in providing all the essentials to its residents, including customized nutritional programs and an on-site dietician. The area’s premier nursing home offers tailored living arrangements with all of the amenities such as superior medical services and staff, fun social events, and a beautiful setting. Arrange a tour today by calling (608) 789-4800. Visit the website for additional information.