Seniors often have to take an array of medications, which can often impact their appetite and nutrition. Proper nutrition is essential, especially during your elderly family member’s golden years. Caregivers can take some steps to ensure that their senior is eating nutritiously, even when medications may interfere with nutrient absorption.
Provide a Variety of Nutrient-dense Foods
If medications are reducing your senior’s appetite, make sure that her food provides a lot of nutrition and calories in small amounts. Rich casseroles filled with vegetables and thick soups and stews will pack a punch in a single serving. If recommended by her doctor, consider vitamin-filled meal replacement shakes to ensure she is getting as many nutrients as possible.
Boost the Vitamin Content of Her Favorite Foods
If your senior is already satisfied with her daily diet and isn’t wild about changing things up, you may choose to improve the quality of the foods she’s eating. Honey is an excellent sweetener with additional vitamins that you can put into tea, oatmeal, or other foods. Chia seeds and flax seeds also have a lot of nutritional benefits that may help your senior take in more vitamins.
Improve the Taste of Meals
Often in an effort to make senior meals healthier, you might forget to make them taste as appealing as favorite foods with fewer nutrients taste. Reduced salt and sugar can be balanced with an increase in herbs and spices, along with savory sauces and gravies. Presentation can freshen up a boring meal and encourage your senior to enjoy meals again. Also, try to make meals more fun and social by providing interesting conversation.
Consider Supplementing with Vitamin Supplements
If proper nutrition cannot be achieved through your senior’s daily diet, ask her doctor about nutrition supplements. Her doctor may recommend a careful formulation of vitamins that address her specific nutritional needs and will make sure that it does not conflict with her current list of medications. While you are talking to her doctor, ask if any of her medications may need to be adjusted to improve her appetite and increase the amount of nutrition she is receiving daily.
While every senior faces different challenges with nutrition and food, a caregiver can make all the difference at mealtime. By making meals a real treat, you can greatly contribute to her overall health and wellness. Take the time to increase the quality of her nutrition, and she may face fewer health issues in the future.
If you or an aging loved-one is considering a Caregiver in Galt, CA please contact the caring staff at Aging Assistant today. (916) 897-4752