Mar 15, 2018 by Erin Couchell
Most senior home care companies make nutrition a vital part of their companion care program and it really is no secret why. Proper nutrition can make all the difference in a senior's life both physically and emotionally.
March is National Nutrition Month, so, in honor of this great initiative, we wanted to take a look at why nutrition plays such a major role in companion care and end with a few tips on how seniors can practice portion control for the benefit of their health.
Quality companion care begins and ends with finding ways to improve an older adult's quality of life. Improper nutrition not only contributes to health problems like chronic illnesses and medical emergencies, it plays a major role in our moods. Poor eating habits can lead to anxiety, depression and many other psychological conditions. This is why it has become a major part of companion care programs across the country.
Professional caregivers can help seniors eat healthier in a number of ways. They can help older adults get healthy groceries and prepare food for them. Caregivers are also trained in feeding and encouraging seniors to develop healthier habits overall.
Older adults should come up with a meal schedule that works best for them. In general, this should meal three small meals and two snacks spread out evenly throughout the day. Of course, this schedule should be modified to meet the needs of particular seniors. For example, if an older adult does not really like breakfast but a hearty dinner works well for them, incorporate that into the schedule. However, meals should never be skipped. Doing so can contribute to overeating.
Water is the source of life. It keeps us alive. Besides that, it can help us eat less. Drinking enough water throughout the day has been shown to contribute to ingesting fewer calories. It can help seniors feel fuller quicker.
Eating fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and fiber-filled foods first can help seniors steer clear of unhealthy, processed foods. Healthier foodstuffs also tend to have more fiber which gives a feeling of fullness much more quickly than processed foods with lots of sugar.