How to Combat the Top Three Nutritional Struggles for Seniors

As we shared in our last blog, meeting nutritional requirements as we age can feel like an uphill battle. Visiting Angels is here to help, with suggestions from the Food and Drug Administration for addressing some of the top dietary challenges seniors face:

Trouble Chewing:
For seniors who cannot chew food well, meats and fresh fruits and vegetables can be a problem. The FDA suggests the following substitutions:

  • Instead of fresh fruit, try fruit juice, apple sauce, or canned peaches and pears.
  • Instead of raw vegetables, try vegetable juices or mashed and cooked vegetables.
  • Instead of large pieces of meat, try ground meat, eggs, milk, cheese, yogurt and other dairy products.
  • Instead of sliced bread, try cooked cereals, rice, bread pudding and soft cookies.

Unable to Shop for Groceries:
Some seniors may have problems shopping for themselves due to being unable to drive or having ambulation issues. The FDA suggests:

  • Requesting a local store deliver groceries to the home.
  • Requesting volunteer shopping help from a local church, synagogue or volunteer center.
  • Asking a family member or neighbor to help with shopping.
  • Enlisting the help of a local home care agency such as Visiting Angels of Fremont and Sunnyvale.

Lack of Appetite:
Elderly people who live alone sometimes feel lonely at mealtimes, which can lead to a loss of appetite. They may also not feel up to making a meal just for themselves or the medication that they take might make food taste bad. For these issues, the FDA suggests:

  • Eating with family and friends.
  • Joining group meal programs offered through local senior citizens programs.
  • Talking to a doctor about whether or not medication might be a problem.
  • Contacting a local home care agency such as Visiting Angels to have a companion prepare and participate in making meal time a social activity.

Still feeling overwhelmed with ensuring your senior loved one is eating properly? Call Visiting Angels for a free in-home assessment, where we’ll meet with your family, discuss your specific situation, and come up with an individualized plan of care. Partner with Santa Clara and Alameda County’s premiere home care agency and watch your loved one thrive!