Eating healthy is a lifelong habit that can easily be neglected with age. Seniors need to pay special attention when it comes to dietary needs. Often, memory issues and the ability to prepare meals tend to get in the way of proper nutrition. To help, caregivers should ensure that meals are planned to meet nutritional needs and health conditions. Below are a few ways you can make a difference in your loved one’s nutrition.
Vitamins and Minerals
Vitamins and minerals are an essential part of everyone’s diet; however, our bodies’ needs change as we age. Bones become brittle without the proper amount of calcium, and our body doesn’t absorb all vitamins the same as it did when younger. Seniors need to increase the amount of calcium and other vitamins they get in their food and supplements. Left to fend for themselves, many seniors overlook these nutritional needs. Assisted in-home caregivers can ensure your loved one receives the vitamins and minerals they need by prepping and preparing nutritious meals.
Many medications need to be taken with food to prevent an upset stomach. Conversely, some medications cannot be taken with certain foods. Older adults often have a difficult time trying to remember all the different foods they can and can’t have with their medicines and when to eat with their medication. Caregivers can help with this through lists left in the kitchen and making certain foods that interfere with medication are not in the diet plan.
Sometimes, seniors cannot physically prepare their own meals and go without eating rather than bothering the people they love. Caregivers and family members need to recognize this and step in. Meal prepping and visiting during mealtime are two good ways to ensure they are regularly eating.
Make a meal and sit down with them; it’s almost guaranteed they will eat some of it when they aren’t eating alone or having to try and prepare it themselves. All too often, proper nutrition is neglected simply because they aren’t able to cook for themselves.
Freezing precooked meals and leaving notes will help when no one is available to be there during mealtime. Home delivery services like Meals on Wheels is another option that ensures nutritional meals are available. Plan ahead for a week at a time and go over the menu with your loved one. Knowing they have meals covered is one less thing for you both to fret about.
The nutritional needs of seniors are an essential aspect of growing older that is easily overlooked. Visit www.AssistedCares.com to learn more about how we can help to keep your loved one’s nutrition on track and feeling their best.