Ageless Wisdom: The Power of a Healthy Diet

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Photo credit: Askar Abayev via Pexels

by Rob Teitelman

The food we eat affects how we feel day-to-day and how we age over the years, perhaps more than any other factor. It supplies the nutrition and nourishment our body needs. The right diet provides energy and essential nutrients, can prevent heart disease, and, not to mention, gives the flavours we crave!

Let’s dive a little deeper into what makes a healthy diet for older adults.

Balanced Nutrition

Older adults need the right blend of healthy foods, which means hitting on the following food groups. Dark green vegetables like kale are excellent, as are carrots and sweet potato. Pick whichever fruit items you’re in the mood for, so long as they’re fresh.

Whole grain foods like whole wheat pasta, oats, and wild rice provide protein, fibre, iron, and zinc. Finally, proteins! Eggs and nuts are great, but you’ll need something more substantial later in the day.

Lean red meat and fish are healthy, but you can also opt for lentils, low-fat yogurt, and soy products as alternatives. More people are eating less meat lately for environmental and economic reasons. 

Older adults in the best retirement homes in Ontario won’t need to meal plan because they have chefs planning and cooking balanced meals for them! After years of grocery shopping, cooking, and doing the dishes, many prefer having their own cook so they can eat delicious, healthy meals with friends in a warm atmosphere without lifting a finger.

Drink Water

As people age, their sense of thirst may decline. Still, drinking water is essential, even if you don’t feel the urge!

Photo by Lisa Fotios from Pexels 

Keep drinking water throughout the day, along with meals and snacks to stay hydrated. Replacing sugary drinks with water can have a major impact on your health.

Low-fat white milk and low-sodium soups are also great for your system. Unsweetened fortified plant-based beverages also work, but water is the ultimate drink. 

Dine Together

Eating isn’t meant to be a lone activity. There’s an important social aspect. Aside from the pleasure of breaking bread with friends and family, eating together can encourage older adults to eat the healthy foods their bodies need. 

Consider joining a lunch group, inviting neighbours and friends over for meals, or planning a potluck. Older adults living in retirement homes have plenty of like-minded people nearby they can eat with, and it’s impossible to overstate the benefits of eating with company. 

Eat for Joy

Healthy eating isn’t only about getting the right nutrients. There are many dimensions to meals that transcend the raw ingredients.

Trying types of food that you haven’t eaten before can kick up your excitement levels. Play some nice music that fits the atmosphere. Eating should be a feast for all the senses. Holistic health is all about giving everything the body needs, and that includes filling up the soul, too. 

When older adults eat balanced meals in a lively, joyous atmosphere, they’ll be loaded with the raw nutrients to stay healthier and power through their day. They’ll also partake in the intangible, transcendent aspects of food culture that make eating one of the cornerstones of living well. 

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