Is your aging family member avoiding meals or choosing foods that don’t have a lot of nutritional value? That isn’t unusual for seniors, but it can lead to bigger health problems. Here are some tips that can help you to encourage her to eat healthier meals on a more regular basis so that she’s able to stay as healthy as possible.

Don’t Try to Make Your Senior Eat Foods She Hates

If there are foods your senior absolutely hates eating, don’t try to make her eat them at all. When someone has food aversions, more exposure to those foods isn’t going to make a difference. That’s especially true as your senior gets older. Focus on what she’s willing to eat and go from there. Try to remember what it’s like for you to be forced to eat foods you don’t like, even if they’re healthy options.

Put a Plan Together for Healthy Eating

Without a plan, this is going to be a lot more difficult for both you and your aging family member. Preparing a menu each week or each month helps your senior to know what to expect and it can make shopping and meal prep easier, too. If your elderly family member needs help with that, home care providers can make those tasks much simpler.

Focus on Keeping Meals Dense in Nutrients

When you’re talking with your senior about meals, the focus needs to be on nutritionally dense foods. That’s even more important if your senior has been really erratic in her eating habits. When she does eat, you need to be getting as many nutrients into her body as possible.

Schedule Meals and Snacks throughout the Day

Something else that can help is to set specific meal and snack times throughout your senior’s day. This helps her body to start to expect foods at certain times. Your elderly family member may still not be excited about eating, but she knows when those meals and snacks are planned to occur.

Consider Whether Your Senior Needs Company

Does your elderly family member need companionship while she eats? Lots of people need to eat with other people in order to feel comfortable eating. In some cases, that’s the missing link when it comes to eating consistently. If this is the case for your senior, elder care professionals are a great choice. Home care providers can spend mealtimes with your elderly family member, engaging her in conversation while she eats.

Work with Her Doctor

Keep working with your elderly family member’s doctor to make sure she’s getting enough nutrients. If she’s still having trouble eating consistently, there may be other solutions that her doctor recommends. Her doctor can also help you to finetune any of the aspects of her plan that you’re worried aren’t giving her what she needs.

Hopefully it becomes easier for your elderly family member to get the nutrition that she needs on a consistent basis. Reassessing the plan periodically can help to keep up with changes she might experience.

Source
https://www.webmd.com/healthy-aging/senior-nutrition

If you or an aging loved one is considering home care in Coon Rapids, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

Did you know that 5.2 million older Americans faced food insecurity in 2019? When an older adult cannot shop for the right ingredients or doesn’t have access to nearby stores, they may start making poor nutritional choices. Being unable to drive long distances can be challenging to a healthy diet.

Another issue is that chronic health conditions can change dietary needs. Your dad may not be accustomed to cooking without added salt or sugar. He may have arthritis that prevents him from holding a knife properly. He needs your help making meals for him, but you work full-time and need meals that take very little time to prepare.

Grain Bowls

Keep cooked quinoa, barley, and brown rice in the freezer. If you store it in serving sizes, it’s easy to put together a grain bowl. Use a microwave to thaw the grain and move it to a bowl. Top it with diced cooked shrimp, canned tuna, or chickpeas.

Add favorite fruits and vegetables that you’ve chopped up and have available. Once your dad has chosen what he wants with his grains, he can add his favorite dressing.

Veggie-Loaded Egg and Tuna Salad Sandwiches

When you have free time, boil a dozen eggs. Move them to the refrigerator and peel them as needed. Use a food processor to finely mince a red onion and a bunch of celery hearts.

Instead of plain tuna salad sandwiches, mix tuna with chopped eggs. Mix ample portions of the vegetables into the egg and tuna. Refrigerate any onion mixture that you don’t use and save it for other recipes.

Add a tablespoon of chopped capers and pickles, if your dad isn’t restricting salt. If he is, swap the pickles for diced cucumber. Shredded chicken breast can be used in place of tuna if your dad isn’t a fan of fish. When your dad is ready for lunch, he can add a few spoonfuls of the tuna salad in a wrap or between slices of whole grain bread.

Ready-to-Eat Quiches

Make some mini quiches on the weekend and put them in the freezer. Load them with vegetables like spinach, kale, broccoli, and red peppers. Boost protein intake by adding crumbled tofu.

If you use a muffin tin, you’ll get the right portion size. Move a few to the refrigerator for quick lunches. When your dad is hungry, he can take a quiche from the refrigerator and warm it in the microwave for a minute.

Home Care Assistance Can Be There to Prepare Meals

Why not let your dad have home-cooked meals throughout the week? You don’t have to stop working or rearrange your daily routine to make sure he’s having more than a heat-and-eat meal. Home care assistance services include meal preparation.

Caregivers can stop by, keep your dad company, and make sure he has hot, nutritious meals all of the time. Call a home care assistance advisor to get started.

Sources:
https://www.ncoa.org/article/what-is-food-insecurity-get-the-facts

If you or an aging loved one is considering home care assistance in Burnsville, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

Added sugar is a bigger deal in foods than you might have realized. It can be especially important for your senior to start really looking at how much added sugar she’s getting in her diet each day. Here are a few steps to take to reduce your senior’s sugar intake, and how home care can help her stick with these changes.

Get Familiar with Food Label Information

Sugar has a lot of different names, and it’s important to get familiar with as many of them as possible. Generally speaking, words that end in the suffix -ose are likely to be a sugar. Some examples include sucrose and fructose. High fructose corn syrup, for instance, is another type of refined sugar. Look at the ingredients, but also at the part of the label that gives calorie and added sugar information in grams. The higher that number is, the higher the added sugars in each serving.

Reduce Sugar Before Just Cutting it Completely

Cutting sugar completely is an admirable goal and there’s no doubt that your senior’s diet would probably benefit, but it’s also unrealistic. If your aging family member eats a diet high in added sugars now, cutting sugar completely would be a shock to her system and to her taste buds. Not to mention that her body would respond with withdrawal symptoms, including headaches, exhaustion, muscle pain, and mood swings.

Buy Unsweetened When You Can

When you can, it’s a good idea to buy unsweetened versions of foods, particularly prepared foods. Sugar can lurk in some unlikely places. For instance, some frozen fruits and vegetables include added sugar for no real reason other than flavoring. Checking the ingredients and the nutritional label can help you to spot those versions and avoid them.

But Don’t Avoid All Sweet Foods

But again, you want to avoid cutting out all sweet foods and sugary items. That’s especially true if your senior has leaned on these items heavily in her daily diet. Gradually reducing is one thing, and it’s probably a good idea. Home care providers can help your senior to strike a healthy balance between sweet treats and healthier options.

Opt for Natural Over Artificial Sweeteners

Any time you can, it’s a good idea to avoid artificial sweeteners. These artificial sugars often have zero calories, which makes them appealing. But they can sometimes cause sensitivities in some people and they can often leave an aftertaste that isn’t appealing. Natural sugars are less likely to have that effect on your elderly family member.

Help Your Senior Stick with the Plan

The biggest issue you’re likely to face is that your senior may not be as on board with this plan as you’d like her to be. You can make it easier by having home care providers help out with meal preparation and grocery shopping, especially if you’re not able to handle those tasks. Home care providers can help your senior to track what she’s eating and drinking, too, getting a solid idea how much sugar she’s really eating a day.

Talk with your aging family member’s doctor about what she can do to avoid too much added sugar. Having a plan gives you a way to help your senior to meet those goals.

Source
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC8492796/

If you or an aging loved one is considering home care in Burnsville, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

No matter how old someone is, eating vegetables is crucial for living a long and healthy life. This is something that many seniors feel like they can give up, but it is still necessary for them to eat a well-rounded diet for several reasons. Fruits and vegetables are key components of a healthy diet because they include the necessary vitamins and minerals that protect and repair the body. Produce also contains fiber and phytochemicals, which are natural plant ingredients that prevent illness.

Here are a few reasons why seniors should be eating vegetables. Keep in mind that if they are having a hard time preparing meals themselves it may be time for you to consider companion care at home to help prepare meals. This will ensure that they are eating a well-rounded diet filled with vegetables.

Vegetables Help a Senior Live Longer

Fruit and vegetable-rich diets improve longevity by considerably lowering the risk of stroke, heart attack, heart disease, and cancer. Their antioxidant concentration prevents Cellular damage, lowering your loved one’s risk of cancer and cholesterol. Fruit and vegetable nutrients also help to boost immune systems.

Reduced Risk of Memory Issues

Diets heavy in fruits, vegetables, olive oil, nuts, and fish, known as Mediterranean diets, have been related to improved cognition in elderly adults. All of these are “brain-healthy” foods that improve cognitive function. According to research, older persons who consume a limited quantity of these items or a large amount of red meat, fried meals, candies or sweets, cheese, and butter are less likely to have good cognitive capacities as they age.

Lowers The Risk Of Chronic Diseases

Chronic disorders such as IBS, obstructive lung disease, diabetes, hypertension, and osteoporosis are reduced in the elderly by a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Apples, for example, assist in decreasing blood pressure and may alleviate diabetic symptoms, while beets include antioxidants that protect against heart disease.

It Can Be a Mood Boost

Vitamin deficiencies have been linked to depression, restlessness, and exhaustion. Vegetables rich in folates, such as leafy greens, beets, and broccoli, may help your elderly loved one feel better. Broccoli also includes the trace mineral selenium, which is thought to aid in the treatment of depression, exhaustion, and sleeplessness. Vegetables and fruits are also quite invigorating, which can assist the elderly person in your life to feel better throughout the day.

Best Salads That Can Be Prepped

If a senior needs help to prep food they should consider hiring companion care at home to help them with dietary needs. Here are a few options you can help with too.

Fruit Salads

If your senior is missing anything like vitamin c or other vitamins, this can be a great and tasty way to add them into their diet. You can cut up fruit in advance and portion it out for them to eat a little every day.

Spinach Salad

Tons of older people struggle with becoming anemic and Spinach is loaded with iron. So you can bump up their levels with a nice spinach salad and add a bit of protein from chicken!

Source
https://fruitsandveggies.org/stories/celebrate-national-salad-month/

If you or an aging loved one is considering companion care at home in Minneapolis, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

It’s a fact that seniors who are overweight have a higher risk of developing some serious health conditions. Overweight seniors can develop diabetes or increase the chances of having a stroke or a heart attack. They also may struggle with mobility issues or painful joints as a result of the extra weight. Doctors often recommend that seniors who are overweight try diets and exercise to get down to a healthy weight. But is a calorie deficit for weight loss harmful for seniors? Unless recommended by a doctor and carried about under a doctor’s supervision, a calorie deficit could be an unhealthy choice for seniors.

What’s A Calorie Deficit?

In order to lose weight a senior needs to burn more calories than they eat. So theoretically eating fewer calories while not changing anything about their lifestyle should help a senior lose weight without having to increase the amount of exercise that they’re doing. A calorie deficit is a specific reduction in calories used to lose weight. However, it’s not as simple or as effective as it sounds.

Calories Aren’t All That Matters

One of the biggest flaws in the calorie deficit plan to lose weight is that a calorie deficit doesn’t regard one type of food as more benefit as the other. The only thing that matters is the amount of calories eaten. But food isn’t eaten just for calories. Foods contain the vitamins and minerals that people need to fuel their bodies and brains. Some foods that are higher in calories, like meat, also have larger amounts of essential vitamins and minerals. Calories aren’t all that matter when it comes to choosing foods.

Seniors Are Largely Malnourished

According to the latest data the number of seniors who are malnourished could be over 50%. That means that 1 in 2 seniors aren’t getting enough calories or enough of the vitamins and minerals they need. A calorie deficit could be very harmful for seniors who are already not getting the nutrition they need. Seniors should be making smart food choices, but cutting out calories isn’t a smart food choice unless a doctor has prescribed it for your senior loved one. If your senior parent is on a calorie deficit prescribed by a doctor a home care provider can help your senior loved one choose foods that fit the eating plan recommended by the doctor and help prepare them. But seniors should never start a calorie deficit unless their doctor tells them to.

Stay Away From Fad Diets

Meals and nutrition can be complicated for seniors, especially for seniors who take medications that might make them gain weight but also take away their appetite. The best way for seniors to lose weight if they are overweight is to have their doctor prescribe a way of eating that will provide the nutrition they need while also cutting enough calories to lose weight. But fad diets can be very dangerous for seniors. So seniors and their families should always get medical advice before starting any kind of weight loss journey.

Sources:
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/calorie-deficit
https://www.webmd.com/healthy-aging/what-to-know-about-malnutrition-in-older-adults

If you or an aging loved one is considering home care in Minneapolis, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

You may have heard that apple cider vinegar is all the rage in the health community. But should your senior parents be drinking or using this natural product? No matter what age someone is, they should consider their health. Seniors should be focusing on weight, nutrition, and a healthy lifestyle even in the final stages of life. Apple cider vinegar may seem like a one all cure all fix, but the truth is there is a lot more to living healthily.

Elder care providers can help a senior by taking care of them daily, but the seniors will still have to put in a lot of work. You may also have to help by recommending foods and supplements a senior should be eating. Keep in mind that elder care providers are not doctors. So, it will be important for a senior to get regular checkups with their primary care doctors.

Here are some reasons seniors may want to drink apple cider vinegar. They should still consider talking to their doctors even if it is a natural product. If a senior takes multiple medications, they will want to ensure that this doesn’t interact with them or understand what the doctor has to say first.

Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a well-known natural treatment. It has been used in cooking and healing for ages. Many individuals believe it may alleviate a broad variety of health problems, but you may be curious about the evidence. Apple cider vinegar has a number of beneficial health qualities, including antibacterial and antioxidant capabilities.

Filled With Healthy Substances

The strong smell and flavor of apple cider vinegar are from acetic acid, which may be responsible for a lot of the health benefits. Organic, unfiltered apple cider vinegar also includes a material called mother, which is composed of protein strands, enzymes, and beneficial microorganisms that contribute to the murky look of the product. Apple cider vinegar is created by fermenting apple sugar. This converts them to acetic acid, the primary active element in vinegar that may account for some of its health advantages.

ACV Kills Bacteria

ACV or apple cider vinegar can kill bacteria. This is also why you see some people use it over wounds or to help limit acne. Vinegar may aid in the elimination of infections, including bacteria. Historically, people have used vinegar to clean and disinfect, as well as to cure nail fungus, lice, warts, and ear infections. What you may not know is that it can help preserve food and also kill bacteria on the food.

May Help With Weight Loss Goals

This benefit needs more research to prove that ACV is responsible for weight loss. However, focusing on a healthy lifestyle while adding in ACV may be beneficial for seniors trying to lose weight or maintain recent weight loss. Vinegar may help you feel fuller longer and consume less calories, which may result in weight reduction.

If you or an aging loved one is considering elder care in Woodbury, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

Are you trying to help your elderly loved one fight the aging process? If so, it can all start with the foods they need to avoid. Research shows there are certain foods that are filled with chemicals or harsh ingredients. They can cause cells to break down faster and lead to symptoms of aging – such as early wrinkles. Learn which foods your elderly loved one should avoid to fight the aging process. Then, share this list with them today.

Sugary Drinks

While not a food, your elderly loved one should avoid sugary drinks if they want to fight the aging process. Research shows that sugary drinks can lead to the following:

  • Formation of wrinkles
  • Fatty liver disease
  • Insulin resistance
  • Obesity
  • Increased pain

All these things can not only make your elderly loved one feel older than they are, some of them can make them look older, too. If you or companion care at home providers need to spend more time with your elderly loved one to help them avoid having sugary drinks, then maybe that should be done.

Vegetable Oil and Margarine

Research also shows that vegetable oil and margarine can speed up the aging process. Did you know that vegetable oil and margarine can lead to the following:

  • Increased risk of cancer
  • Obesity
  • High blood pressure
  • Lacking energy

If you want to help your elderly loved one feel and look younger – and to stay healthier overall – you should encourage them to avoid eating vegetable oil or margarine. If they need something like this, you or the companion care at home providers should advise them to use olive oil instead.

Baked Goods

Does your elderly loved one eat a lot of baked goods? Maybe, they love cookies, cakes, brownies, and other baked goods. If this is the case, you should really try to encourage them to, at the very least, eat healthy baked goods such as baked apple chips. You or a home care provider can do some research online. It wouldn’t take much time to come up with a list of healthy baked items for your elderly loved one to add to their diet. They can use these healthier options to replace with the unhealthy baked goods they have been eating.

Conclusion

These are some of the foods and drinks that can help your elderly loved one fight the aging process. If they need even more healthy foods and drinks to add to their diet, you or a senior care provider can help them to look up healthy recipes online.

Sources
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11426286
https://www.webmd.com/diet/features/is-your-diet-aging-you

If you or an aging loved one is considering companion care at home in Burnsville, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

Keeping your senior as healthy as possible involves making sure that she’s getting the nutrients that she needs. These are just a few of the most important nutrients your senior should be getting from her diet on a regular basis, and how senior care can help.

Vitamin D

Vitamin D is tremendously important in ways that are only just recently starting to be fully understood. Vitamin D is crucial for bone health, but it’s also essential for regulating cellular function throughout the body. It supports immune health, brain function, and muscle function, too. Without enough vitamin D, your senior isn’t able to absorb calcium, another crucial nutrient.

Calcium

Alongside vitamin D, calcium helps your senior to maintain healthy bones and teeth. If your senior has been diagnosed with osteoporosis or even if she’s lost just a little bone density, her doctor may recommend some hefty calcium supplements. But calcium is also important for keeping your senior’s cardiovascular system healthy, too.

B Vitamins

There are quite a few B vitamins, and some of the most important include folic acid and vitamin B12. All of the B vitamins are helpful in avoiding anemia, and they’re also a vital part of protecting nerve health. This is especially important for helping your senior’s brain to stay healthy. Without enough B vitamins, your loved one can very quickly lose muscle tone, lose nerve health, and develop anemia.

Iron

Iron is also important in avoiding anemia. It’s an essential nutrient for red blood cells in particular, which is even more crucial if your senior has any lung health concerns. That’s because the red blood cells ferry oxygen throughout the body via the circulatory system, and low iron levels affect the health of red blood cells. Too few, and there isn’t anything to carry oxygen around, which causes breathing issues for your senior.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Healthy fats are something your senior’s body and brain crave, especially in the form of omega-3 fatty acids. Getting enough omega-3 fatty acids is also associated with preventing macular degeneration and can help your senior’s joints to stay healthy. Omega-3 fatty acids are available in fatty fish as well as plant sources like flaxseeds and walnuts.

Eating a healthy diet is the best way to get all of these nutrients into your senior’s body on a regular basis. It may be time to consider hiring senior care providers to help with meal preparation and even reminding your senior to eat. You’ll also know exactly what your senior is eating, which can alleviate a lot of worry for you.

 

If you or an aging loved one is considering senior care in Burnsville, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.

Malnutrition is a risk at any age. Even if your parents are eating regular meals, they’re still at risk of malnutrition. If they’re not eating the proper nutrients, they’re risking issues like iron-deficient anemia, low bone density, and vitamin B12 deficiencies that lead to dizziness, memory issues, and problems with balance.

It often seems complicated to follow a healthy eating plan. But, it doesn’t have to be. Use these tips to get your parents to make better choices when it comes to their meals and snacks.

Follow a Rule of Fourths

When your parents have a meal, they need to aim for fourths. A fourth of the plate is protein. Another fourth is a whole grain. The remaining half of the plate should be fresh fruits and vegetables.

Take Favorite Meals and Snacks and Improve Them

Sometimes, it’s helpful to take a close look at family recipes and see if there are ways to improve them. Your dad loves meatloaf. Switch to ground turkey or chicken to lower the fat content. Lean ground beef also helps. Lower the sodium content and add more vegetables to reduce the amount of meat in the mixture.

Your mom has a sweet tooth and loves brownies. Make them without sugar using banana puree instead. If she likes oatmeal cookies, skip the sugar. Instead, use banana puree and add lots of nuts and chopped apples for a nutritional kick.

Stop buying store-bought bread. Make homemade bread and add more fiber by avoiding all-purpose flour. Instead, use whole wheat flour and add other grains, seeds, and nuts. You’ll control the sodium and sugar when you make it from scratch.

Eat Plenty of Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

Ensure your parents have access to fresh fruits and vegetables. They should form the majority of the foods your mom and dad eat all day. Of course, they want to mix up their colors, too. Leafy greens are essential, but so are cruciferous vegetables like cabbage and antioxidant-rich tomatoes.

Get plenty of fruit each day in a hurry. A smoothie made from frozen berries, hemp or flax seeds, yogurt, and banana is a nutritious, easy-to-make breakfast.

Help your parents make better choices when it comes to their meals and snacks. With the help of senior care aides, your parents have someone to help them choose foods at the grocery store. They don’t have to get frozen meals or takeout as their caregivers can cook for them. Call a senior care agency to find out more about prices and schedules.

If you or an aging loved one is considering senior care in Minneapolis, MN, and the surrounding areas, please contact the friendly staff at CareBuilders at Home Minnesota. Call today 612-260-2273.