Senior Living + Nutrition

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The importance of a healthy regimen can never be overstated no matter where you happen to fall on the spectrum of health. With all of the benefits modern medicine has to offer, we’re equally challenged to keep our systems in check especially when medication is thrown into the mix. Eating well is important at all ages. For seniors, it is a vital aspect of thriving in this phase of life, which has its fragilities that are often characterized as “unavoidable”. However, with the right diet and awareness of supplemental advantages, adverse health issues can be circumvented.

Maintaining a well-planned and well-balanced diet every day has numerous health benefits. It may reduce the risk of developing some diseases including Type II diabetes, heart disease, stroke and osteoporosis. Among seniors who already have these diseases a consistent, healthy diet may help them to be better manage and prevent complications. Just as poor nutrition can exacerbate disease processes and accelerate general aging, proper nutrition can support overall health and well-being.

IMPORTANT FACTS TO CONSIDER:

-60% of hospitalized seniors are also diagnosed with malnutrition

-3.7 million American seniors are malnourished

-Malnutrition in seniors has many causes:

  • Underlying diseases or health problems
  • Required dietary restrictions related to diseases or health problems
  • Depression
  • Isolation, loneliness or decreased social contact
  • Changes in oral health
  • Changes in sensory sensitivity; particularly the senses of taste and smell

-Malnutrition is a serious health issue for seniors and may lead to multiple health problems, such as:

  • Weakened immune system & increased risk of infection
  • Poor wound healing
  • Muscle and bone weakness leading to increase falls and fractures

Educating oneself on facts such as these is not only invaluable, but can serve as a preventative measure in the long term. In addition to the guidance from your healthcare practitioner, there are numerous online resources that contain a wealth of information on diet, health, research on alternative treatments, and an index of vitamins and minerals. On his website, Dr. Weil on Healthy Aging, you’ll find articles and recipes by Dr. Weil for healthy additions to the daily program. Sunrise Senior Living is another great resource for nutritional information. Be aware of websites that may not contain legitimate sources of information, and always consult with your doctor first.

The bottom line, good health is immeasurable wealth!

 

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