Just as your body naturally changes with age, so should your diet. Your food choices and the amount you eat must support and enhance what your body needs at each stage of life.
The Food Pyramid for Seniors
2 + Servings Daily
Protein-rich foods, such as dry beans and nuts, fish, poultry, lean meat and eggs. If you haven’t already reduced your salt intake, now is the time to start. Sprinkle less salt on your food with each meal, until you don’t even notice the difference.
Fruit. Choose deep-colored fruits, such as blueberries, and leave peels on to gain the most nutritional value.
3 + Servings Daily
Low or nonfat dairy products. Swap for lactose-free dairy if you have trouble digesting dairy. You need higher levels of calcium and vitamin D to keep bones strong.
Brightly colored vegetables. Look for dark green, red, orange and yellow vegetables for the most nutrients.
6 + Servings Daily
High-fiber, fortified or whole grains. Be sure to increase your water intake as you increase your fiber intake to decrease gas in the intestine and promote regularity.
8 or more 8-ounce glasses of water or beverages such as fruit/vegetable juice, milk, reduced sodium soup, tea or coffee. Medications can contribute to dehydration, and your sense of thirst decreases as you age. Therefore, make drinking water and healthy fluids a planned part of your daily diet.
Five Tips to Healthy Eating
Good nutrition boosts your immunity, fights toxins in the body, reduces the risks of disease and improves your daily energy level. It also improves focus and enhances memory and mental alertness.
- Drink plenty of liquids. Water, low fat milk or 100% juice are great options. Stay away from beverages with added sugars and salt. Carry a bottle of water with you throughout the day to encourage fluid intake.
- Plan ahead for healthy meals. If you are cooking for yourself, research healthy recipes for seniors and incorporate into your grocery list each week. Planning and preparation are essential to ensure you have healthy options, including healthy snacks, on hand.
- Know how much to eat. Learn how much to eat and practice portion control. Check out My Plate’s Super Tracker to help track your food.
- Read the Nutritional Facts label. Know your target calories, fats, and sodium and read labels.
- Increase your daily intake and variety of nutrients. While food is the best source of vitamins and minerals, ask your doctor if he/she advises a vitamin or other supplement to help you stay healthy.
At Twin Lakes Senior Living Community in Cincinnati, Ohio, we offer a wealth of services exclusively for our residents. Whether you want restaurant-style dining venues, housekeeping or access to our fitness center, our top priority is making your life easier and more enjoyable. Find out more about Twin Lakes by contacting us today! Call 513-247-1300.