Healthy eating means different things depending on your age. When you are young, you have a great metabolism meaning you need more calories to get through the day. As you grow older, your metabolism slows down, and thus you need fewer calories. Additionally, seniors need to eat foods that support healthy living, which can mean changing their approach to buying, cooking, and even consuming food. In this article, we will look at some tips to help ensure seniors are not only eating right but also able to shop for the right types of food.
Understand What a Healthy Plate Is
When talking about a healthy plate, you will also hear people talk about a balanced diet. A healthy plate contains food from all five food groups. What you have on your plate will change from one meal to the next, but you need to ensure you have at least one item from each group on your plate.
Always Read the Nutritional Information
When shopping for fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, there is no need to read the nutritional information or labels. However, when shopping for things like cereals and packed meats, you need to know what is in the foods.
Apart from nutrients like proteins, you need to know the amount of sugar, sodium, and other ingredients in each food you buy. The additional ingredients like sodium can turn healthy foods like lean meats into unhealthy ones.
Take Advantage of Existing Programs When Shopping for Food
Healthy eating can sometimes be out of reach for seniors. For those at risk of food insecurity, several programs can help ensure you get enough of the right types of food. These programs, which you will sometimes see called healthy food benefits, allocate some money to healthy foods.
Once you apply, you are given access to branded cards that you use to shop at various healthy food retailers and outlets. You can use your healthy food card to shop for staples like whole grains, supplements, dairy products, and other food items depending on the particular program you have access to.
These healthy food benefits and the healthy food cards you get when you apply help eliminate food insecurity. They also limit the risks of unhealthy eating like heart disease and obesity.
Use Recommended Servings
Seniors are at a higher risk of losing weight due to not eating enough. You should know the right amount of food you need to eat every meal to maintain your ideal weight. There are online resources that detail what the recommended daily servings of all foods are. Take advantage of them to find the ideal amount for your age.
Many people do not count water as food, but it is so crucial to your well-being that it deserves a mention. Seniors should consume little amounts of water throughout the day. Plain water, as well as beverages like tea, all help you stay hydrated.
As we get older, the importance of healthy eating increases because our nutritional needs change too. Seniors need to ensure they are eating healthily and in the right amounts for their health and well-being.