An older adult’s diet follows the same principle as the one recommended for adults. However, an older adult will need utmost care in the choice, preparation, and food combination. This is important to keep them in good health.
As you age, however, there will be slight changes in what a healthy meal entails. For instance, as you advance in age, the metabolism already slows down. As a result, you do not need more calories like before. However, your body will benefit from a choice of some food nutrients. As a result, choosing foods that provide the best nutritional value is a good choice.
Healthy eating is essential for adults as it helps induce healthy aging, prevents the onset of age-related diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, and cancer, and ensures you have healthy bones. Here are recommendations from the experts on how to eat healthy as an adult:
Avoid Rushing Meals
Most elders do not get many physical activities. As a result, they don’t need much food to stay healthy. However, rushing meals without chewing them well increases the tendency of overeating. When this happens, you have a calorie surplus, and such excess calories get stored as fat. This sets the stage for extra weight, which is not helpful at old age.
Rushing food also prevents you from detecting when you are full enough to stop eating. As you eat, take time to savor the flavors. Listen to your body and look for clues of satiety.
Change the meal’s preparation method, size, and consistency to suit your needs for people with chewing challenges. Grating into smaller configurations can encourage intake and reduce complications while eating.
Eat for Optimum Energy
As humans approach a certain age, there will be a natural decline in energy levels. While nature scheduled this, a decrease in the levels of vitamin B12 might also be responsible.
If the B12 vitamin is deficient, you can make up for it via supplementation. It can help boost your energy levels so you can keep up with daily activities. Besides, a drastic reduction in energy level, which affects physical activities, can weaken the heart muscles and alter bowel movement.
Besides supplements, other sources of the B12 vitamins are mackerel, sardines, yogurt, red meat, cereals, etc.
Keep Your Skin Healthy with More Vitamin C and E
One of the signs of aging is dry skin which you should not accommodate as you advance in age. With Vitamin C and E, you can keep your skin healthy. A common source of vitamin E is sunflower seeds, spinach, almonds, etc. Foods rich in vitamin C are bell pepper, cruciferous vegetables like kale, broccoli, etc.
In addition, your water intake should be high. Many body processes rely on enough water, which also helps keep the skin in good condition. As a result, injuries heal faster, and you get to avoid dry skin. If you are worried about urine incontinence or frequent visit to the restroom, consider incontinence products.
Eat Different Vegetables
The digestive system slows down as humans advance in age. As a result, eating foods rich in fibers can help eliminate any complications from indigestion.
This makes it essential to consider a series of vegetables of assorted colors into your meal. Eating different vegetables will enable you to get the required fiber to keep your digestive system in good condition.
However, vary your vegetable intake daily since they offer various nutrients and vitamins that the body needs to survive.
Include Abundant Fibers
One of the common diseases for people aged 50 and above is type 2 diabetes. The good news is, dietary fibre helps delay the release of sugar into the bloodstream, which balances the glucose level in the blood, according to research. Fibre also helps boost digestion, reduce cholesterol and keep the weight healthy. Above all, you also enjoy a healthy and regular bowel movement.
According to a report from the Dietary Guidelines for American, it recommends that adults male aged 51 and above consider 28 grams of dietary fibre per day while females in that category take 22.4 grams per day.
The best sources of fiber are fruits, nuts, beans, vegetables, whole grains, etc.
Cut down on Sugar
There is no specific health benefit of consuming sugar. Processed sugar, especially, does not offer any nutritional advantage, and they have lots of calories.
As a result, cut down on sugar and treats in your diet. Consider natural, whole foods. Switch to honey as the natural sweetness can replace sugar. Also, there are naturally sweet foods like sweet pepper, sweet potato, etc.
Concentrate on Healthy Fat
Not all fats are the bad guys. As a result, cutting fat away thoroughly is not recommended. However, stay away from saturated and Trans fat. In short, avoid any fat that solidifies at room temperature.
On the contrary, consider monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats. They are healthy fats that protect the body and its organs, keeping you in good health and supporting good mental wellbeing. Sample recommended foods are nuts, fish, olive oil, avocado, etc.
Concentrate on Essential Nutrients
Ensure you eat varieties of food to get all essential nutrients. Ideally, you should endeavor to have different colors on your plate. Typically, a healthy meal should include the following:
- Lean protein like seafood, eggs, beans, and lean meat
- Fruits and vegetables
- Whole grains like wheat pasta, brown rice
- Low-fat dairy-like milk and its alternative
As you age, consider more vitamin C, and reduce excessive salt in food.
Seniors need to have the right food combination for healthy aging. This article is a guide that can help provide a direction for the nutritional needs of adults.