Roadblocks to Achieving Proper Senior Nutrition
As we age, our dietary needs change. In general, seniors consume less calories than before, but need more nutrients than before. For example, older adults need more protein, calcium, vitamin D, and B12 than adults under age 60.
Unfortunately, this need for more nutrients often comes at a time when health issues create their own set of problems, or when lack of money or a decrease in social activities become an issue in getting the right nutrition.
For example, sometimes depression, a chronic illness, a lack of motivation, or a lack of desire to cook for one affects appetite in a negative way. Sometimes taste buds change or certain medications make eating less enjoyable. It may become difficult to afford groceries on a fixed income. Physical disabilities or dementia may make it difficult to shop for groceries or prepare meals alone. Even issues like dental problems can get in the way of consuming a good mix of nutrients because certain foods end up excluded from a diet.
Doctors, nutritionists, pharmacists, care coordinators, family members, professional caregivers, and charitable and community resources, such as Meals on Wheels, may be able to help remove some of these roadblocks. And strategies to reverse loss of appetite, increase enjoyment of food, or adopt new eating habits can do wonders. But at the very least, seniors need to make sure the meals they do eat are packed with as many nutrients as possible.
Courtesy of Caresync