It's important for you, as a senior, to develop good eating habits to support your changing body. Your body has different nutritional requirements now than when it was younger. Learn how your diet keeps you healthy and lets you enjoy these retirement years.
The Benefits of a Proper Senior Diet
Foods that are full of vitamins improve the immune system to help fight off disease and promote healing. A healthy diet reduces the chance of heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and a stroke. A diet with fewer calories, but high in vitamins and minerals, keeps your body lean and healthy.
A healthy diet also promotes mental sharpness. Foods rich in anti-oxidants improve memory and alertness. Fruits, dark-green leafy vegetables, nuts and fish containing Omega-3 fatty acids which aid in attention span and focus. They can even reduce the risk of Alzheimer's.
Fresh foods, not processed, are a key to having more energy and stamina. You will feel less tired and be better able to participate in activities with your friends and family. When your body feels better, your mood improves, too.
Foods to Look Forward To
There are a number of food choices that help seniors maintain a healthy body. These can be prepared as part of a meal or eaten as a snack throughout the day:
Fruits - Whole fruits provide more fiber and vitamins than juices. Eat a variety of berries, melons, apples and bananas to get a daily dose of anti-oxidants and vitamins.
Vegetables - Dark-green leafy vegetables such as spinach, kale and broccoli are full of anti-oxidants. Squash, carrots and yams are other healthy options that help fight off illness.
Dairy - Healthy bones are important to prevent osteoporosis and fractures. A calcium-rich diet is necessary for strong bones. Cheese, yogurt, milk and cottage cheese are good sources of calcium. If you cannot tolerate dairy, almonds, broccoli and tofu are good alternative sources for calcium.
Grains - Whole grains provide more fiber and nutrients than processed flour products. Cereals, bread and pasta marked as "whole grain" are preferred over other ingredients.
Protein - You still need protein for strong bones and muscles, but you should avoid fatty meats to get it. Eggs, nuts, seeds, beans and fish are lean ways to get the dietary protein without eating high cholesterol foods.
Water - An older body has a more difficult time regulating fluids. Along with a healthy diet, drink water throughout the day. This keeps your body hydrated and reduces the risk of urinary tract infection and constipation.
Getting Help With the Right Diet
As you age, it can be difficult preparing a proper diet when living alone. Regularly scheduled meals and fresh, healthy foods are more accessible to you when staying in a retirement community such as Bridgeport Place Assisted Living. You can enjoy your meals in the comfort of community dining areas knowing you are getting the diet you need to enjoy a healthy life. You'll have the support of friends in the community, the staff, dieticians and chefs who know what foods are best for your diet.