Have you been to your elderly parent’s home recently and been concerned over the sparseness of the contents of the cupboards and refrigerator? You’re not alone. As seniors age and start to become more frail, new sets of difficulties crop up in regards to eating nutritiously. For seniors who live alone, sometimes the tasks of planning, purchasing and preparing meals may not feel worth the effort. Other seniors may have difficulty chewing or suffer from an upset stomach. However, there are ways to bring the joy back to mealtimes and enhance the nutrition and thus the health of an elderly loved one. Here are a few tips:
Problem: Can’t chew
Those who have trouble chewing may have trouble eating foods such as meat, fresh fruits and vegetables.
- Instead of fresh fruit, try fruit juices and soft canned fruits, such as applesauce, peaches and pears
- Instead of raw vegetables, try vegetable juices or creamed, mashed and cooked vegetables
- Instead of whole meat, try ground meat, eggs, milk, cheese, yogurt and foods made with milk, such as pudding and cream soups
- Instead of sliced bread, try cooked cereals, rice, bread pudding and soft cookies
Problem: Upset stomach
Too much gas and other stomach problems may cause people to stay away from foods they think cause the problem. This means they could be missing out on important nutrients, such as vitamins, calcium, fiber and protein.
- Instead of milk, try milk foods that may not upset the stomach, such as cream soups, pudding, yogurt and cheese
- Instead of vegetables such as cabbage and broccoli, try vegetable juices and other vegetables, such as green beans, carrots and potatoes
For single seniors or for an aging couple who live at home, consider using Live Free Home Health Care for some menu planning, assistance with food shopping and meal preparation. Our caregivers are trained to factor in good nutrition while making meals more pleasant and flavorful. Live Free Home Health Care, servicing Concord New Hampshire and the rest of the Lakes region and central New Hampshire, can bring the joy back into dining—using eye-catching table settings and companionship to lift the moods of those needing care as well as providing fundamental nutrition.
For more tips on overcoming obstacles for seniors to eat well, click here, and to learn more about how Live Free Home Health Care can keep a loved one safe and provide care in the comfort of home, call (603) 217-0149.