A Healthy Diet for Seniors by Foodie Team
Do you wish to stay young and healthy forever, and fear the health struggles of old age? If the answer is ‘yes’ like most of the people, then you should make sure that you are living a healthy lifestyle today. One of the essential components of a healthy lifestyle is a well-balanced diet. It is important to maintain a balanced nutrition at every stage of life. As you grow older, you start losing appetite and thus, your health starts to deteriorate. The dietary requirements and nutrition needs of your body begin to alter a bit. It is important to understand your body needs as you grow old and respond to them accordingly. Failure to do so may result in weakness, giving way to develop chronic health conditions.
Being an active and smart-looking senior citizen is a dream of many. Let us guide you towards the path of an eternal health by listing down the components of a healthy diet for seniors.
Do not forget carbohydrates for a single day:
This is perhaps the easiest thing to do. After all, who does not like food like potatoes and rice? As an older adult, it is necessary that your plate contains a source of carbohydrate at each meal, daily. Other important sources of carbohydrate include cereal and bread.
P for power, P for protein!
Protein is the best way to make your muscles strong and healthy. No one would like to be feeble and dependent on others for as small a task as walking, right? So, gear up on protein when you hit the landmark of 60 years. Fish, lean meat, poultry, eggs, beans, and nuts are great sources of protein. Never miss a day of including any of these in every meal!
Bring colors to your life with fruits and vegetables:
Fruits and vegetables are certainly the holy grail of healthy diet. They provide your body with uncountable benefits – you cannot thank them enough! AND to top it off, they come in such a huge variety that you can go on days eating different fruits and vegetables every day, and you would not have to repeat any. Make it a goal to eat five servings of fruits and vegetables every day to stay healthy.
Consume low-fat dairy foods:
One of the adversities of old age is the weakening of bones. Thus, extra calcium and vitamin D is required at this age. Low-fat dairy foods promise to fulfill this void and keep your bones strong. Now that you know, including three servings of these foods, such as milk, yogurt, and cheese in your daily diet. In addition to these, you can also eat fortified cereals, green leafy vegetables and canned fish, such as sardines, as these are also rich in calcium. You may also try taking calcium supplements.
Choose the right type of fat:
It is crucial to consume fat which is good for your heart. CAUTION: Stay far away from saturated or animal fat and trans-fat as these are responsible for increasing the blood cholesterol level, thus increasing the chance of a potential heart disease. So which is the right type of fat for you? The answer is mono-saturated fat and polyunsaturated fat. Both decrease the level of cholesterol and the risk of cardiac disease. Mono-saturated fat can be found in almonds, cashews, unsalted peanuts, olive oil, peanut oil and rapeseed oil. Whereas, polyunsaturated fat can be consumed from walnuts, hazelnuts, sunflower oil, flaxseed oil, sesame oil and oily fish. However, it is extremely important to not go hard on these items as an excess of these fats may lead to weight gain.
Go easy on salt:
The first ‘don’t’ of the healthy diet for seniors: do not use the excess of salt in your meals. One simple way of doing so is by replacing salt with lemon juice, pepper, herbs and spices while cooking. The food won’t lose its flavor and the risk of high blood pressure will be reduced. Moreover, while you are in the food section at the supermarket, spend a couple of extra seconds to check the food labels for their salt quantity. Avoid processed and canned food as they contain high amounts of salt. This simple trick can save you from stroke or heart disease.
Say no to empty caloric food:
Foods that contain empty calories include biscuits, sweets, cakes, snacks, and confections. Although all these items are appealing and taste heavenly delicious, they contain great quantities of sugar, calories, fat and salt. Therefore, you need to say goodbye to these food items with a heavy heart. You may eat these once in a blue moon though, but not too much!
Become best friends with water:
Staying hydrated is the best healthy tip of all time! It is recommended to drink at least eight glasses of water daily. Not drinking enough water causes dehydration which paves the way for tiredness, fatigue, dizziness, and constipation. To avoid all this hassle, always keep a stock of water, juices, fruit drinks and milk. All serve the same purpose!
Welcome fiber-rich foods with open arms:
Foods that are rich in fiber ensure regular bowel movements, hence decreasing the risk of constipation. Some of the food items which are a great source of fiber include pulse vegetables, cereals, wholegrain bread and potatoes with their jackets. These foods also lower the risk of obesity and other heart diseases. Start your day with fiber-filled breakfast and you will be good to go.
Some exercise won’t hurt:
The duo of good nutrition and exercise is unbeatable. Add all the nutrient-packed food in your diet and do not forget to give a fresh start to your day with some minutes of physical activity. Regular exercise not only keeps you fit and smart but also promotes healthy blood flow in the body.
Now, you have got all the information regarding a healthy diet which will turn all the sorrows of old age into a delight. The secret is out! All you have to do is eat healthily, exercise regularly and think positive. Most importantly, you need to stick to this plan and make sure that you maintain this healthy diet as a senior citizen. If you find yourself alone some day and do not feel like eating anything, give your friends a call and enjoy a meal with them instead of just skipping it in the first place. Surviving the old age does seem like a challenge sometimes but you have got to face it like a hero. Follow a healthy lifestyle and old age will become a bed of roses. Embrace this stage of life confidently, stay smart and healthy, and lead an active life.
Contributed by a foodie and fitness enthusiast. A food lover who loves to eat, meet new people and listen to their stories, and laugh. A digital marketing expert at day and blogger at night. You can read more at blog Foodie Team