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Golden years, golden health

Produce nutritious and enjoyable meals for the elderly
Good nutrition and eating habits not only add years to life, but life to years. For most of us, our parents are probably at an age where they’re enjoying well-earned relaxation and enjoyment. However, we should never throw caution to the wind and let them over indulge in gastronomical pleasures without keeping an eye on good nutrition. Understanding their bodily changes will guide us towards helping them eat properly and stay healthy and strong.

Everything slows down with time

As the years go by, their basal metabolism and physical activity will decrease, and their body will require less energy. At the same time, their blunted sense of taste and smell, compounded with poor eyesight, will further erode the enjoyment of food. And in some situations, the loss of teeth will make it even harder for chewing and digestion. With a little planning, you can still produce nutritious and enjoyable meals for the elderly.

What you can offer

  • Try to include more nutrient-rich foods such as rice, iron-fortified cereals, noodles and bread in their daily menu.
  • Add soft proteins like fish, eggs, cheese, tofu or beans if chewing is a problem.
  • Cut the meat into small pieces and tenderise through stewing or boiling.
  • Dark green vegetables and orange-coloured fruits supply the much-needed vitamins A and C to boost immunity.
Due to their flagging appetites, it is advisable to offer them 5-6 smaller meals instead of 3 main meals. If the food is bland, season with herbs and spices instead of excessive salt and sugar. You may also want to supplement their diet with a specially formulated beverage packed with calories, vitamins, minerals and easily digestible proteins.

For older women, it is important to maintain their calcium levels to reduce the risk of osteoporosis. Drink two glasses of NESTLÉ OMEGA PLUS ACTICOL low fat, high calcium milk, that also helps lower cholesterol levels. If one if lactose intolerant, yogurt such as NESTLE Fat Free Yogurt is a good source of calcium too.

So as you can see, staying in the pink of health in your golden years isn’t that big an obstacle. With good understanding and proper guidance, it’s quite easy to eat right, stay healthy, and enjoy the good life! And remember to remain active with regular exercise to maintain fitness levels.