Nutrition in The Third Age

Nutrition in The Third Age

As we age, the importance of getting proper nutrition increases in order to lead a healthy and quality life.

I understood that better when I was taking care of my parents. But it is not always easy to find nutritious foods. This is the case especially for the elderly. Sudden collapses can occur physically, spiritually, and emotionally. All of these affect nutrition. People begin to lose their healthy eating ability. This loss may even end up not eating, which means it is time to get assistance.

Nutrition for the elderly…

Sometimes elderly people lose their appetite for many reasons and cannot eat properly. Sometimes they have no appetite or may feel lonely. They may be in mental depression. They may have problems with their teeth. Or they may have to consume foods with low nutritional value due to financial difficulties. Whatever the reason, the proper nutrition of the elderly is very important. Proper nutrition is essential against heart disease, blood pressure, stroke, dementia, blood sugar, and visual health problems. There is no problem with occasional small snacks. A small piece of chocolate is not a problem, but some snacks can be extremely harmful. There are extremely healthy and delicious snack foods for every age group. For those who don’t like to cook or don’t know how to cook, there are small appetizers, healthy and tasty snacks. Nowadays, elderly people are not as conscious of their nutritional values as the younger generation is. Existing health problems may be caused by unhealthy eating habits. Foods high in sodium and sugar, overcooked, canned foods, red meat, simple carbohydrates, and starchy foods are examples. Currently, easy to prepare, empty in nutrition, harmful to health snacks fill the shelves of grocery stores.

Making a difference…

Consuming high nutritional value foods improve the quality of life. For example, parents in the 80s who stop consuming sugar, fat, harmful snacks, and start taking multivitamin supplements may start to feel more energetic and happier in just a few weeks. Cholesterol and blood pressure counts may become regulated. It can contribute to a healthier and more enjoyable life.

Nutritional needs

It should not be forgotten that every elderly person has unique nutritional needs. Just as the periodical needs of infants vary, they are similar for the elderly.

Important basic nutrition

Cereals (whole wheat), vegetables, fruits, milk, meat and legumes, fats (oils, nuts, some fish, olive oil, avocado)… What to eat is determined by factors such as age, gender, weight, exercise frequency, and state of health. These basic food groups can help you with your specific nutritional needs. Your dietitian or doctor can give you the most accurate information about your diet. Besides nutrition, regular exercise is always recommended. The length of the exercise should be 20-30 minutes per day. This time can be divided into two sessions. There are various kinds of exercises that are suitable even for the elderly.

Nutrition tips

Salt consumption needs to be limited because salt can cause heart failure and high blood pressure. It is useful to learn about nutritional problems in the elderly. Where does the problem arise and what should be done to solve it? Some problems are slow and difficult to understand. The consumption of the right foods has an enormous impact on overall health, memory, mental health, and quality of life. Malnutrition is extremely common among the elderly. It is useful to have information about how you can protect yourself from diseases through nutrition. Many of us know the effects of the fruit on memory and that it is an anti-aging food. Nutritional problems in the elderly can be solved by some simple changes that can be made daily. Such minor changes can have a huge impact on health. Because nutritional deficiency is a major problem in the elderly. Healthy snack recipes are very popular now. Extremely delicious, easy and healthy recipes are suitable for all age groups. Many healthy dessert recipes are very tasty and fresh. These recipes can be prepared using low salt and sugar. The elderly consume fresh foods. More attention should be paid to raw foods and food hygiene in elderly nutrition. It is very important to take certain foods and supplements for the eye health of the elderly, especially for macular degeneration disease. Visual loss in the elderly is a common and serious condition. Importance should be given to protect against eye diseases by paying attention to what to eat.

Dr. Sinan İbiş