Malnutrition means that a person’s body does not receive the necessary nutrients to perform essential functions. A lack of protein, too few calories or nutrients, or too much of anything can all play a role. More than 10 million older Americans are at risk of hunger, and nearly 10% of adult Americans are malnourished, according to the National Council on Aging. Making sure your body gets the nourishment it needs can become more challenging as you get older. Maintaining a healthy diet can be more difficult for seniors who live alone.
Here are some ways senior living in Plano, TX can get the proper nutrients to residents so that they will not suffer serious consequences from malnutrition.
Symptoms and Causes of Elderly Malnutrition
Malnutrition affects people of all ages, but the elderly face unique challenges. Reduced appetite, weight loss, mobility issues, and lack of access to good food are just some of the difficulties that seniors may face. Due to factors such as breathing difficulties, dementia, or a change in taste, aging persons may have impaired nutrient absorption. It can be challenging to shop and prepare healthy meals for oneself as we age, perhaps leaving us deficient in the vitamins and minerals we need to keep healthy.
Poverty is a major contributor to senior malnutrition and cannot be ignored. 7.3% of the senior population, or 5.3 million seniors, are food insecure, meaning they do not have consistent access to food, according to Feeding America. Seniors living on a restricted income often have to choose between essentials like food, rent, heat, and medical care.
5 Ways for Reducing the Risk of Malnutrition
What can you do to protect the elderly you care about from malnutrition? Having a keen eye for detail is crucial. Make your concerns known if a loved one is losing or gaining weight, feels frail, or experiences prolonged wound healing. Find out what your loved one eats on a regular basis by inquiring about it and checking the fridge and pantry.
Here are some strategies implemented by senior living in Plano, TX to increase food consumption and improve appetite:
- All three meals of the day are prepared by professional chefs and with the guidance of nutritionists. With the time and effort you save from preparing these meals, you may devote more to savoring them.
- The meals are prepared using only the freshest ingredients. A wide selection of cusines are available to whet the appetites of residents.
- A five-star restaurant creates a welcoming atmosphere, where a cozy table setting and some friendly service by team members may do wonders for the mood and the hunger.
- High-protein food such as chicken, cheese, butter, egg yolks, almonds, and seeds are provided to residents. In between meals, residents can consume high-calorie snacks like yogurt, cereals, greek yogurt, puddings, and crackers with milk.
- Residents are encouraged to enjoy their food while accompanied by their neighbors and friends. To eat with family members and relatives, you could even set up a video call using FaceTime or Zoom.