March is recognized as National Nutrition Month by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and it serves as a good time for home care providers alike to re-evaluate what their clients are eating. Healthy eating is an important part of elderly individuals’ well-being, and there are a few things senior caregivers should focus on when devising meals for their patients.
Bone health is often one of the most significant concerns to seniors. Conditions such as arthritis and osteoporosis are not only painful, but they can raise the risk of falling. Luckily, there are certain compounds that are tied to improved bone health such as calcium and vitamin D. There are a number of good sources for both nutrients, such as milk and oily fish. Calcium is also found in leafy green vegetables such as kale and spinach.
It’s also important for seniors to maintain optimum heart health, something in which diet certainly plays a role. Adding fruits and vegetables is always a good step to take, notes the Mayo Clinic. However, choosing the right fats is important as well, which means focusing on olive oil and canola oil and avoiding substances like butter and creamy sauces.
Healthy eating is particularly important in the senior population. Experts say older adults are especially vulnerable to malnutrition due to everything from depression to other health concerns.