Making healthy food choices is a smart thing to do –no matter how old you are!!
Your body changes through your 60s, 70s, 80s, and beyond. Food provides nutrients you need as you age. Use these tips to choose foods for better health at each stage of life.
- Drink plenty of liquids- With age; you may lose some of your sense of thirst. Drink water often. Low-fat or fat-free milk 100% juice also helps you stay hydrate. Limit beverages that have lots of added sugars or salt. Learn which liquids are better choices.
- Make eating a social event-Meals are more enjoyable when you eat with others. Invite a friend to join you or take part in a potluck at least twice a week. A senior center or place of worship may offer meals that are shared with others. There are many ways to make mealtimes pleasing.
- Clean healthy meals- Get advice on what to eat, how much to eat, and which foods to choose, all based on Dietary guidelines. Find sensible, flexible ways to choose and prepare tasty meals so you can eat foods you need.
- Vary your vegetables- Include a variety of different colored vegetables to brighten your plate. Most vegetables are a low-calorie source of nutrients. Vegetables are also a good source of fiber.
- Eat for your teeth and gums-Many people find that their teeth and gums change as they age. People with dental problems sometimes find it hard to chew fruits, vegetables, or meats. Don’t miss out needed nutrients! Eating softer foods can help. Try cooked or foods like unsweetened fruit or low-sodium food.
- Use herbs and spices- Foods may seem to lose their flavor as you age. If favorite dishes taste different, it may not be the cook! Maybe your sense of smell, sense of taste, or both have changed. Medicines may also change how foods taste. Add flavor to your meals with herbs and spices.
- Keep food safe-Don’t take a chance with your health. A food-related illness can be threatening for an older person. Throw out food that might not be safe. A void certain foods that are always risky an older person, such as unpasteurized dairy foods. Other foods can be harmful to you when they are raw or under cooked, such as eggs, fish or meat.
- Read the Nutrition Facts label-Make the right choices when buying food. Pay attention to important nutrients to know as well as calories, fats, sodium, and rest of the Nutrition Facts label. Ask your doctor if there are ingredients and nutrients you might need to limit or to increase.
- Ask your doctor about vitamins of supplements- Food is the best way to get nutrients you need. Should you take vitamins or other pills or powders with herbs and minerals? These are called dietary supplements. Your doctor will know if you need them. More may not be better. Some can interface with your medicines or affect your medical conditions.