As a caregiver, managing a senior's nutrition is a priority every day. Seniors do not always manage their own nutrition intake as well as they should. Sometimes, it is because they forget if they have eaten a meal, while other times they may not understand why they need specific nutrients. Change in any fashion is tough for seniors, so keeping an eye on their daily intake is important.
It can't be said enough that seniors can easily get dehydrated. For many reasons, seniors may neglect to drink enough liquids throughout the day. In warmer climates, dehydration is a risk, but seniors can get dehydrated even in the colder seasons. It is important to track liquid intake throughout the day, offering it in small doses through food and drinks.
Fresh food is the best way to get antioxidants. Nutrition-packed foods in combination with vitamin and mineral supplements can ensure that your senior gets the maximum amount of antioxidant protection they need. For seniors with limited ability to chew and swallow, fresh foods can be put into a blender to create smoothies and sauces.
Seniors need calcium for strong bones and teeth. While the primary source of calcium is dairy foods, many seniors cannot digest dairy foods well. To maintain proper levels of calcium in the diet, green vegetables, nuts and beans should be served regularly.
4. Vitamin D
This vitamin is called the "sunshine vitamin" because our main source comes from sunlight. However, if your senior doesn't go outdoors often, they may be low on Vitamin D. To supplement it, serve eggs, fish and milk or take a vitamin supplement.
Protein is an important building block for seniors, providing energy and maintaining muscle tone. Seniors may not eat enough protein because they don't want to cook for one person or it is too much effort to cook at all. Some seniors have trouble digesting proteins because of loss of digestive enzymes as they age. However, protein comes in many forms and not all of them are as difficult to digest. Nuts, nut butters, legumes and protein drinks can help increase intake. Seniors who eat enough protein will live longer and have a higher quality of life.
Caring Senior Service has the experience, compassion, and training necessary for comprehensive home care, and we also offer a wide range of home care services that are all designed to make life easier for seniors and their families. To learn more about the services we provide, contact us today!