The diet of older people obviously has differences from general people. A balanced and healthy diet is very important to stay healthy in old age. Because balanced and healthy food maintains the physical and mental well-being of the people. Studies have shown that eating healthy food as well as exercising for at least 30 minutes every day helps maintain the balance of the body with age.
Foods for older people
Less calorie, but more nutritious
Need to eat fewer calories for aged people. As people get older, their movement and physical activity decrease. Besides, hunger and demand for water also decrease. Older people need to eat healthy nutritious food even if they need fewer calories. For this, it is more necessary to eat fruits, vegetables, fish, and meat without fat. At this time you should eat less rice, potatoes, and sweet foods.
Increase protein intake
As you grow older, you begin to lose muscle strength and energy, known as sarcopenia. It is a major cause of weakness, broken bones, and poor health for aged people. So you have to eat pulses, eggs, peas, nuts, seeds, mushrooms, chicken, fish, and meat without fat.
Constipation is a common health problem for aged people. Especially people over the age of 65. This is because at this age, people’s movement decreases and constipation occurs as a side effect of taking different types of medicine. For this, it is important to eat an adequate amount of fibrous food to prevent constipation and keep the intestine’s activities properly. At this time they should eat red flour bread, vegetables, peas, peeled fruits, such as guava, apple, blackberry etc.
Calcium and Vitamin D
The ability to grow new bones decreases with age and increases the risk of fractures at a later time, which can lead to Osteoporosis. Vitamin D is needed to stay away from these. And a good source of vitamin D is sunlight. As a rule, you have to stay in the sun for 10-20 minutes more than once a day. In addition, milk, yogurt, cheese, egg yolks, sesame, mushrooms, orange juice, small fish with thorns, Kachu Saak and Kalami Saak can be eaten.
Stomach acid production decreased in older people. As a result, Vitamin B12 is less absorbed. In addition, the elderly may have problems with various neurological disorders. Vitamin B12 is very important for those who eat vegetarian food. For this, you have to eat bean seeds, nuts, bananas, peas and green vegetables. And those who do not eat vegetarian food should eat fish, meat, eggs, milk, yogurt, etc. without fat.
The risk of high blood pressure, kidney stones, osteoporosis and heart disease increases with age. These diseases are more common in the elderly. For this, aged people should eat pulses, nuts, different types of seeds, potatoes, tomatoes, dates, different types of vegetables, such as cauliflower, cabbage, carrots, peas, etc. as a source of Potassium.
Iron: diet for older people
Anemia is a common problem in the elderly. And it is important to eat iron-riched foods to get rid of this problem. For this, you have to eat a pomegranate, beetroot, vegetables, pulses, nuts, meat without fat, eggs etc.
Water: diet for older people
The amount of water in our body decreases with age. And as a result of this long-term dehydration, the ability to absorb medicines decreases and increase tiredness. You need to drink enough water for this. In addition, soups and fruit juices can be eaten to avoid dehydration.
Such foods should be included in the list to increase immunity. Because these foods can reduce any kind of inflammation and protect against the risk of Cardiovascular disease and diabetes. Anti-inflammatory foods include tomatoes, olive oil, walnuts, fatty fish, blueberries, cherries and oranges.
The point to note is that if you already have a physical problem, you should eat as advised by a doctor or nutritionist. The advice of a doctor or nutritionist will help keep you free from any kind of problem.
Something to do
- Appetite decreases with age. This can lead to weight loss and malnutrition. For this, you have to eat nuts, yogurt and boiled eggs as healthy food.
- Food should be eaten every 2-3 hours
- The smell, taste and feeling of food decrease with age. As a result, the food may seem less interesting. For this, you have to have variety in food and eat food as per your choice.
- Elderly people may have tooth loss, difficulty eating and chewing food. So food should be soft and easy to digest.
- Weakness and loneliness can increase due to various physical illnesses, family and financial problems of the elderly. For this, it is necessary to go out of the house from time to time.
- Excess sugar, salt and tea, coffee, soft drinks should be avoided with age.
- We need to try to control weight.
- You have to walk 30-45 minutes every day.
Author: Lina Akhtar, Nutritionist, Thakurgaon Diabetic and Healthcare Hospital