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Elderly Care: 5 Best Foods For Senior Citizens
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), a majority of the diseases that older people suffer are as a result of lack of proper diet, which is why good nutrition plays a major role in elderly care.
For instance, fat in food is linked cancer of the prostate, colon, and pancreas. Degenerative diseases such as osteoporosis and diabetes are also diet-related, more specifically with micronutrients.
As we age, our bodies change – not just in how they look, but also in how they work.
It may take longer for you to digest meals. You may not drink enough water because you don’t feel as thirsty as you used to. Food may lose some of its taste, so you simply might not be interested in eating.
When these things keep you from eating well, your ageing process may not be as smooth as it needs to be and may cause health problems. In fact, many seniors cope with dehydration-related accidents and vitamin deficiency. However, proper nutrition can help prevent and reduce the intensity of health conditions in seniors.
Fortunately, there are plenty of easy ways to help seniors eat healthy. Swapping out dried fruit for fresh fruit, ‘hiding’ vegetables in a tasty smoothie and snacking on fibre-filled foods are just some of the ways seniors can get the nutrients they need to stay healthy.
Lots of fruits and vegetables, healthy proteins, whole grains, some low-fat dairy and healthy fats, and less salt are the basics of a healthy diet. But some foods are especially helpful for older adults who need to eat healthier.
Therefore, we have curated a list of 5 superfoods which are a important for seniors and should be included in their daily meals.
Chia Seeds are among the healthiest foods in the world and contain vicious fibre which help reduce blood sugar levels. This means they are good and should be included in meals of diabetes patients. Chia seeds are also loaded with antioxidants which fight the production of free radicals, that can damage cell molecules and contribute to diseases like cancer.
Cherries may be small in size, but they pack a major health punch and are one of the healthiest fruits that should be added to the diet. Cherries have the power to combat inflammation. They are full of antioxidants, fibre, calcium, and vitamin C to help protect against chronic diseases and also boost your recovery after exercise. Cherries also help the body digest sugar more slowly and are hence, a great food for diabetics.
Salmon carries Omega-3 Fatty Acids which help in reducing levels of beta-amyloid, a protein that causes Alzheimer’s. For the seniors who are non-vegetarian, this is an amazing option to go for. It is one of the most popular fish choices in America and has gained popularity all over the world in the last few years. It's very low in saturated fat and a good source of protein. It's also one of the best sources of vitamin B12. It's also bursting in potassium and other nutrients like iron and vitamin D.
The health benefits of almonds are extensive and not unknown and they are especially good for seniors, as they help fight cataract progression. Almonds also help improve cholesterol, lower blood pressure, are high in vitamins and minerals and have a decent amount of fibre. Almonds are portable and generally non-perishable, which makes them good on-the-go snacks. However, almonds can be very calorie-dense, so consuming them in moderation is essential.
All of us remember saag (an Indian dish made with spinach) being force fed to us sometimes, by our grandmothers and/or mothers. Now we know why spinach was an integral part of our growing up years. With nutrients like Iron, Vitamins A, B, C, and K and a number of minerals and phytonutrients, spinach is considered as a powerhouse of nutrition. Every 100 gram has just 23 calories and a 1 cup serving has 10 times your daily requirement of Vitamin K, your complete requirement of Vitamin A and huge amounts of iron, folate, manganese, magnesium and copper. It is good for your eyes, bones, skin and tissues, while also preventing cancer, neurological problems and a number of diseases.
Healthy eating is important for any age but becomes a necessity when it comes to elderly care. As well as keeping your body healthy, eating well can also be the key to a positive outlook and staying emotionally balanced. But healthy eating doesn’t have to be about dieting and sacrifice. Rather, it should be all about enjoying fresh, tasty food, wholesome ingredients, and eating in the company of friends and family.
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