It’s certainly not a surprise that a healthy diet is necessary for a healthy body. What many people don’t recognize, however, is that nutritional needs for adults need to be adjusted as we grow older. Nutritional professionals at Tufts University have created the MyPlate system, which is a more advanced version of the earlier food pyramid, providing updated guidance for nutrition in seniors.
The MyPlate for Older Adults model features details on foods that are high in vitamins and minerals and low in sugar, salt, and fat; however, it also gives advice on topics such as advised physical activities and fluid intake, issues that are essential building blocks of nutrition in seniors.
Due to the fact that activity levels are often diminished, older adults tend to need fewer calories as they age, but they also still require the same or higher levels of nutrients and regular activity for ideal health. MyPlate for Older Adults advises:
- Bright-colored vegetables, like peppers and carrots
- Deep-colored fruits, like melons and berries
- Whole, fortified, enriched grains and cereals, like brown rice
- Low- and non-fat dairy products, including yogurt and low lactose milk
- Liquid vegetable oils and soft spreads, which contain less saturated and trans fats
- Spices as opposed to salt
- Liquids such as water and fat-free milk
- Physical activity, like walking, resistance training, and light housecleaning
In addition, further recommendations include taking advantage of options that are more simplified to prepare and reduce waste, like bags of frozen pre-cut vegetables and individual-portion cups of fruit.
At Specialty Care Services, we recognize it can be a challenge to help older loved ones stick to a nutritious diet. Our dedicated caregivers can help plan and prepare wholesome, appetizing meals according to your loved one’s specific nutritional needs. Contact us online or call us at 301-585-6300 to learn more about our Potomac home care and senior care services in the surrounding areas or to arrange for a free in-home assessment.