Elderly Eating Nutritional

612 Words3 Pages
Energy requirements can turn down with age, mainly if physical activity is limited, but the need for protein, vitamins and minerals stays the same. It's very important that food choices are nutritionally dense, which means you still need to eat a variety of foods to get all the vitamins and minerals you need, but with fewer calories. If you're overweight or obese, it's even more important to be calorie conscious. Advice to limit fat intake, mostly cutting saturated fat to improve heart health, remains true for older people who are fit and well. Above the age of 75, fat control is less likely to be helpful, and isn't right if the person is frail, has suffered weight loss or has a very small appetite. In fact, in these situations additional fat may be used to increase the calories in meals and snacks to aid weight gain. Older people can suffer from constipation and bowel problems mainly due to a reduced gut motility and inactivity. To reduce this, try eating high-fibre cereal foods, fruit and vegetables. Raw bran and extreme amounts of very high-fibre foods are not the answer, though; they're too large and may get in the way with the absorption of certain nutrients. To help the gut work right, it's also important to drink plenty of fluid. Dehydration can make people feel drowsy or confused, it's important to drink, even if this means extra trips to the toilet. The risk of dehydration can be higher in older people because their kidneys don't function as well as those of younger people. Older people are also not as sensitive to the feeling of thirst. Fluid intake doesn't just mean water - it can also include such drinks as tea, coffee, fruit juice and squash. Generally fit and healthy older people should limit foods and drinks that are rich in sugar, as it can damage dental health and add to weight gain when energy intake is too high. But for people who have a
Open Document